Frank W. Jackson died at home on September 29, 2021, at the age of 88 years. Frank lived a robust and rewarding life. He is survived by his wife, Ellen Danfield Jackson; five children, Toquaiah, Wilson, Monique, Quenby and Bisque; and eight grandchildren. He was predeceased by his first wife, Joaquine I. Jackson, in 1998. The middle son of three boys, he spent his formative years in Pittsburgh, PA graduating from Peabody High School. He matriculated to Princeton University, was graduated in 1955, attended Johns Hopkins Medical School, completed additional training in Internal Medicine and Gastroenterology at The University of Pennsylvania and moved to Harrisburg where he practiced medicine for many years, founding Jackson Gastroenterology. He was a husband, father, friend to many, and ceaselessly curious. His was an expansive, restless intellect and he made direct and indirect meaningful impact to many. He had a remarkable ability to identify the best and at times unrealized potential of people and collaborated with many friends and colleagues on a wide range of projects and ventures over his lifetime. He greatly valued his family and his friendships. He was an early advocate of patient empowerment and education and was involved or central to a wide range of innovative, entrepreneurial endeavors. In the 1970's and while continuing his solo gastroenterology practice, he developed an early interest in cardiac rehab and exercise physiology and helped pioneer local cardiac programs and services. In the 1980's, he founded American Rehab, a patient disease and health educational venture that became a forerunner and model to many patient education and advocacy programs. Around the same time, he founded Chek Med Systems which later evolved into GI Supply, now a company with international presence. He held numerous patents and collaborated with many colleagues to coalesce concepts to reality - a particular talent. Many of his ideas now impact numerous areas of patient care and his forward thinking products remain in use in hospitals, surgical centers and medical offices throughout the world. Notable was his advocacy around patient education. His written print material from the 1980's would become a valued and globally viewed internet resource for many in the 1990's. In the late 1990's he built the first, free-standing ambulatory surgical center in Pennsylvania. His retirement years were filled with further travel and investigation into the human microbiome (while also establishing a new business venture, Prebiotin), studying our galaxy, celebrating and learning more of his ancestors (in particular, Colonel Samuel M. Jackson, Civil War regiment leader of the Pennsylvania Bloody 11th), expansive writing and tireless investigation to satisfy his innate curiosity. His professional career included numerous leadership positions within the local hospitals, president of the state gastroenterology society, wide-ranging national and international research projects and collaborations, and alumni support for his as well as local educational institutions. His personal life brought remarkable strawberry fields, giant tomatoes, what he considered the best corn in town and personal challenges on the hottest of hot peppers. He enjoyed bringing people together from varied and disparate backgrounds towards a common and often simple social event or celebration. He ran three marathons in his 60's. He always delighted in a good prank. He could wiggle his ears to the amusement of his kids and later, his grandkids. He enjoyed sharing his perspectives with his grandchildren on our time and place while on this earth. He valued and enjoyed the company of many friends with whom he connected and maintained meaningful, lifelong friendships. The family extends warm appreciation to the many kind words and remembrances. They are greatly valued. The immediate family will come together in a private ceremony to celebrate what he brought to us and to share our life memories. We anticipate a larger celebration at a future date to bring those who knew him opportunity to gather, share in those reflections and recognize a person common to us.
Published by Patriot-News from Oct. 9 to Oct. 10, 2021.