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R.I.P. Frank Parker AKA Shawn Brady

Days of Our Lives actor Frank Parker, who played Shawn Brady on the NBC soap for nearly a quarter-century, has died from complications of Parkinson’s disease and dementia.  Parker — best known for playing the role of Grandpa Shawn Brady on Days of Our Lives,  died on Sept. 16 in Vacaville, California.

Frank Parker

Frank Parker was born on July 1, 1939 in Darby, Pennsylvania, USA as Frank Russell Parker.   He played the role from  of Patriarch Shawn Brady from 1983-2009  on Days of Our Lives .

The veteran actor passed away due to complications of Parkinson’s disease and dementia, according to his obituary in The Reporter. He was 79.

Parker’s acting career spanned over five decades. Frank was described as “a people person” who “touched many lives and was loved by everyone.”

He first broke onto the scene in the 60’s and 70’s, making appearances in film and television — including on soap operas General Hospital and The Young and the Restless — before landing the role as Shawn Brady on Days in 1983.

The actor remained on the daytime drama for 25 years. He retired in 2008 after his character died when he gave up his oxygen mask to save his son during an airplane hijacking.

Around that time, Parker’s health was reportedly beginning to decline which caused him to give up acting for good.

“He could light up a room with his singing voice and was known to burst into song at any moment,” his family wrote. “He was a ham and loved the spotlight. Above all, he was the most supportive, generous, kind man and father. Frank loved his family.”

Parker leaves behind twin daughters, Danielle Dallas and Lindsay Kyle, from his first marriage to Nola Donelle Rajcok. His first-born daughter, Candace Donelle, died in 1998 from a car accident.

The actor is also survived by his second wife, Mary Jean Dunning Garofalo. The couple wed in 2005 and resided in Vacaville up until his death.

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