Synopsis: Jason David Frank, the actor who played Tommy Oliver, aka the Green Ranger, in the “Power Rangers” franchise, died on November 19 in Texas. He was 49 years old at the time.
Jason David Frank, the ‘Mighty Morphin Power Rangers’ star, died at the age of 49
Jason David Frank, the actor who played Tommy Oliver, aka the Green Ranger, in the “Power Rangers” franchise, died on November 19 in Texas. He was 49 years old at the time.
Justine Hunt, Frank’s manager, confirmed his death to the Associated Press. There were no other information regarding the actor’s death that could be confirmed, but she requested the “privacy of his family and friends during this awful time as we come to terms with the loss of such a lovely human being.”
“Mighty Morphin Power Rangers” debuted on Fox Kids in 1993 and ran for three years, enthralling a youthful audience with its dynamic band of kung-fu adept vigilantes. In the years afterwards, the “Power Rangers” franchise has spanned several incarnations and adaptations, with Frank frequently reprising his part in the series and becoming a fan favourite.
Frank’s character was originally presented as an antagonist in the series – put under a spell by the Power Rangers’ nemesis Rita Repulsa, the Green Ranger is a lethal foe to the team of heroes. Frank, who was supposed to make a brief appearance, ended up becoming a series regular due to the character’s popularity among fans. When the Green Ranger is freed from Rita’s mental control, he is converted into the White Ranger, a role that Frank filled for the next two seasons.
“I can’t believe it…. Jason David Frank, rest in peace.” Walter Jones, one of Frank’s “Mighty Morphin Power Rangers” co-stars, posted on Instagram. “It breaks my heart to learn that another member of our precious family has died.
Frank went on to play several “Power Rangers” characters, including a Red Zeo Ranger in “Power Rangers Zeo” and the first-ever Red Turbo Ranger in “Power Rangers Turbo,” but he left the latter mid-season. Other notable appearances in the franchise include “Power Rangers Wild Force,” “Power Rangers: DinoThunder,” and “Power Rangers Ninja Steel.”
Frank, who was born on September 4 in Covina, California, is in the World Karate Union Hall of Fame and the Black Belt Hall of Fame. Frank’s acrobatic abilities were not the result of film magic; the famed actor was also an eighth degree black belt in karate and had expertise with other martial arts styles such as Taekwondo, Judo, Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu, and Muay Thai. He began taking karate at the age of four and obtained his first black belt at the age of twelve.
Frank began building martial arts schools in 1994. Frank taught a new, self-created fighting method called Toso Kune Do, which translates to “Way of the Fighting Fist” and integrates many diverse martial arts techniques, at these dojos.
After the end of “Mighty Morphin Power Rangers,” Frank met Kyoshi Rick Herbster, who became his long-term business partner. Together, they founded Rising Sun Karate Academy, where Frank remained an instructor for the rest of his life.
Frank made his MMA debut in 2010 at the US Amateur Combat Association’s first-ever “Lonestar Beatdown” in Houston, Texas, defeating MMA competitor Jonathon “the Mack Truck” Mack in the first round. A year before the match, he began receiving MMA training from UFC lightweight Melvin Guillard.
Frank was recently cast in an upcoming film directed by Aaron Schoenke. The film, titled “Legend of the White Dragon,” would star Frank as the titular warrior.
Frank leaves behind two boys, Hunter and Jacob, as well as two daughters, Skye and Jenna.
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