My broke truck

I have a 97 2500 454 it dies like you trun the key off, but there is still power to turn the engine over but the truck wont start, and after a couple of tries it will start. It might go for a week and not do it or it might go a couple of miles any thoughts

How many miles on it? When was the last time you changed the spark plugs and wires, how about the fuel filter?

145,000 just changed both, the volt meter goes dead when it dies

So the starter isn’t spinning, when it stalls?
If so, my guess is the battery or a connection to the battery.

Get a multimeter and hook it across the battery. See what the voltage is while starting.

To eliminate ground as being a problem, get booster cables. Use only the negative black side (let the positive lead dangle) and tie one black terminal to the battery’s negative post. Tie the other to a beefy metal part of the engine.
If it now wants to start, you have a bad ground somewhere.

It is curious that the voltmeter goes out when the trouble happens. Do the warning lights turn on at the same time or is the rest of the dash out also? If the dash is turning off also it might mean the ignition switch is going bad in the RUN position. If it is just the voltmeter then I suggest you check out the fused power circuit for that area and look for a intermittent connection problem. It might tie to the ignition system also and that would explain the delay in the restart.