Jason David Frank, famous as Tommy Oliver, also known as the Green Ranger in the “Power Rangers” franchise, died on November 19 in Texas. He was 49 years old.
Frank’s death was confirmed on Sunday to the Associated Press by his manager, Justine Hunt.
Justine Hunt said in a statement Sunday that Frank passed away. She did not share details regarding the demise. She had requested, the “privacy of his family and friends during this horrible time as we come to terms with the loss of such a wonderful human being.”
In 1993, “Mighty Morphin Power Rangers” first premiered on Fox Kids. It aired for three years for a young audience. Frank’s character was originally slated for a limited appearance. He began as an antagonist in the series, as the Green Ranger, who was placed under a spell by the Power Rangers’ nemesis Rita Repulsa. To the team of heroes, Green Ranger posed as a deadly adversary.
Although originally slated temporarily, Frank soon became a series regular due to the character’s popularity among fans.
Following the storyline series, after being freed from Rita’s mind manipulation, the Green Ranger transformed into the White Ranger — a role that Frank fulfilled. For the two seasons, Frank played White Ranger, thereby becoming an iconic character.
Frank’s buddy Ranger, the Black Ranger played by Walter Jones, took to Instagram to express his loss.
“Can’t believe it…. RIP Jason David Frank….My heart is sad to have lost another member of our special family,” wrote Jones.
Frank went on to become the face of the Power Rangers franchise. He continued to be an integral part of the Power Rangers franchise. He even appeared in various shows and films, as a Red Zeo Ranger in “Power Rangers Zeo” and the first-ever Red Turbo Ranger in “Power Rangers Turbo”. He even appeared in “Power Rangers Wild Force,” “Power Rangers: DinoThunder” and “Power Rangers Ninja Steel.”
He was born on September 4th, in Covina, California. Frank was not only an actor but also had an eighth-degree black belt in karate and possessed experience with various other martial arts styles, including Taekwondo, Judo, Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu, and Muay Thai. Frank received his first karate black belt when he was 12.
He even had a self-created system of fighting called Toso Kune Do, which translates to “Way of the Fighting Fist”. He taught all these in several martial arts schools that he opened in 1994.
After the “Mighty Morphin Power Rangers” wrapped, Frank, with the partnership of Kyoshi Rick Herbster, opened Rising Sun Karate Academy, where Frank remained an educator for the remainder of his life.
It was reported by TMZ that Frank’s second wife, Tammie Frank had filed for divorce in August. Frank is survived by four children, one with Tammie Frank and three from his first marriage to Shawna Frank.