Dale Hamilton enlisted in the US Army Reserve at age 18, served 4 years, was discharged and entered college. He earned a Bachelor of Science, and a Master of Science (with distinction) in biology and chemistry. He entered the University of Florida in 1971, completing his Doctorate in microbiology, and subsequently a Post-doctorate at the University of Rochester. In 1980 he completed a second Post-doctorate in clinical microbiology and went to work at Meharry Medical College. He became Board-certified in Public Health and Medical Laboratory Microbiology and licensed as a laboratory Director in Tennessee and Florida. He was elected a fellow in the Royal Society of Medicine in 2006.
In 1982 he accepted a direct commission as Captain, US Army Medical Corps, and was assigned to the Experimental Therapeutics Unit, Walter Reid Army Institute of Research. In 1984, he successfully completed Army Airborne School, and qualified and was accepted in the Special Forces Qualification course- at age 40. This was successfully completed and Captain Hamilton was assigned to the newly forming 1st Special Operations Command at Ft. Bragg, NC. His subsequent military assignments include 3rd Special Forces Group, XVIII Airborne Corps, US Army Special Operations Command, and finally, United States Special Operations Command- direct descendant of the OSS. His significant contributions to military medicine include a vaccination program for Honduran children which completed 27,000 immunizations and for which he received Presidential recognition, restoration of the Kuwait public health system during the first Gulf war- for which he received the Kuwait Decoration Brevet, and finally, LTC Hamilton founded and served as Program Director for the Special Operations Medical Association for 20 years as it grew from a tiny yearly gathering at Fort Bragg, into a major international event drawing participants from all of our allied NATO countries.
He retired from the Army in June 2002, and in 2008 he retired from his position as Supervisor of the Pathology Department, Alvin York Veterans Administration Medical Center. In 2010, Dr Hamilton received the investiture and accolade of the Sovereign Military Order of the Temple of Jerusalem, bestowing on him the rank of Chevalier. Later that same year, he was chrismated into the Holy Orthodox Church. Today he builds reproduction mahogany speedboats in his shop in Murfreesboro.