Dale B. White, 59, a senior editor of U.S. News & World Report, died Sunday at George Washington University Hospital after a long illness.

He had been on the Washington staff of the weekly news magazine since 1955.

Born in Bonham, Tex., Mr. White grew up in Malden, Mo. He graduated from the University of Missouri in 1939 and became a reporter for the Jefferson City Post-Tribune.

He joined the United Press bureau in Jefferson City a year later and then spent 1941 as a radio news writer at station WLW in Cincinnati.

In 1942, Mr. White rejoined UP in its Washington bureau From 1943 to 1946 he served with the U.S. Army, seeing duty in Japan, then came back to UP and was assigned to London and later to Frankfurt, Germany.

From 1951 until joining U.S. News & World Report here, he was with the Army Times in Frankfurt and in London, where he was editor of the American Daily.

He is survived by his wife, Emily Olsen White, and a daughter, Judith Margaret White, of the home near Oakton, Va.; his father, Gordon R. White Sr., of Malden, and a brother, Gordon R. White Jr., of Paragould, Ark.

The family suggests that expression of sympathy be in the form of contributions to the American Cancer Society.