Jason David Frank was found to have died from suicide at 49 after his passing was announced on Sunday, November 20. The actor’s cause of death was confirmed on Dec. 1 by his wife, Tammie Frank, who shared a heartbreaking message about her last few days with her late husband.
“My husband was Jason David Frank, who tragically lost his life to suicide just last week,” she said in a statement to People. “While Jason was a well-known name to some, we lived a very normal life with ups and downs, just like anyone else.”
She continued, “The truth is, I had no idea that Jason was thinking of ending things. Yes, he had struggled with mental health issues and depression before, but I could never predict what would happen that night. It was meant to be a fun weekend getaway, and instead, I lost the love of my life. Jason was a good man, but he was not without his demons. He was human, just like the rest of us.”
The actor, who rose to fame by playing the Green Power Ranger on the beloved children’s action series Mighty Morphin’ Power Rangers, was originally reported to have died by suicide, with sources close to the star confirming to TMZ.
Jason’s death was confirmed by his representatives in a statement. “Unfortunately, it is true, please respect 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,” they said. “He loved his family, friends and fans very much. He will be truly missed.”
After his death, a number of fans and former co-stars paid tribute to Jason, including Amy Jo Johnson, who rose to fame as the original Pink Power Ranger on the show. She shared a selfie with her former co-star, who she also appeared alongside in a cameo for the rebooted Power Rangers in 2017. Underneath the post, she wrote a touching message to her friend. “Jase, you were beautiful and truly unique. My life just won’t be the same without your frenetic, hilarious, caring, driven and creative ball of energy. I will always love you, dear friend. Please Rest now In Peace,” she wrote on Instagram.
Other actors who starred alongside Jason over the years shared memories with him. Walter E. Jones, who was the original Black Power Ranger on the show, also shared the sad news of his passing by sharing a throwback cast photo of everyone on the show. “My heart is sad to have lost another member of our special family,” he wrote on Instagram. David Yost, who was the original Blue Power Ranger, also shared a series of photos of him with his “complicated friend” over the years on his Instagram and reflected on how much they went through together. “You had my heart on day one,” he wrote. “So intelligent, so funny, so energetic. A light so bright, a force like no other. You shaped & transformed so many lives. I know you can now see the truth of the glory that is you.”
Jason made his debut in Mighty Morphin’ Power Rangers in 1993. While his character Tommy Oliver was originally only supposed to appear in a short run of episodes, his character became a series regular and fan favorite. He became the Green Ranger and White Ranger. He went on to appear in the film, as well as the Zeo and Turbo series as the Red Ranger in both. He reprised his role as Tommy Oliver (and the White and Green Ranger) in various different Power Rangers series over the years.