FOX 17 mourns the loss of Ralphie Frank, our skateboarding mascot

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GRAND RAPIDS, Mich. – After bringing years of joy to residents across West Michigan, we are saying goodbye to Ralphie Frank.

Ralphie, the skateboarding dog, was always seen around town with his dad, FOX 17 Anchor Christian Frank, and mom, Jamie.

He was a staple in West Michigan parades, such as the Santa Parade, Tulip Time and many others. He was also seen at local events and fundraisers including the Paws, Claws and Corks Fundraiser and the Blocktail Party. 

The Franks say Ralphie passed away early Monday morning.

Here is Christian's Facebook message from Monday: " breaks our hearts to report the passing of Ralphie Frank early this morning. He developed a brain tumor that was giving him intermittent seizures and trouble breathing. I was able to take him on his final skateboard ride one week ago today, which he really enjoyed. His 9-years of parades, fundraisers and riding around downtown earned him many fans. His little buddy Hank has promised to continue the work of bringing smiles to the faces of people in West Michigan."


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  • Ken Nowak

    We are deeply saddened to hear of Ralphie’s passing having lost our four legged family members ourself we know how hard it is. You will be in our thoughts and the best thing Ralphie’s would want is for you to adopt a new buddy to fill your hearts with new adventures bless Ralphie for the time he spent with all of us!

  • Brenda

    So sorry that Ralphie left you for the trip across the rainbow bridge. I hope Hank does a great job following in those pigeon-toed footsteps.

  • Karen Riggs

    So very sorry that you have lost Ralphie. Or should I say we have lost, he was such a sweet man and I enjoyed the stories, the skate boarding, parades,etc.


  • Diane Novak

    Dear Christian, I Am So Sorry Your Buddy Passed. A Big Hole Is In Your Heart. He Was An Amazing Dog. So Full Of Joy. God Bless You. Little Hank Has Big Paws To Fill. MacKenzie’s Has A Beautiful Deaf Dog, Freddy. Maybe He Could Be Hank’s Buddy. Check Freddy Out. FreddY Is Amazing And Very smart.

  • Leoti

    Our Prayers go out to the Frank Family and I need to say Thank You for sharing Ralphie with us. My son is Autistic and if we saw your family downtown he would be kind and do tricks even when he seem tired. It seems like he knew
    My son and sometimes would get a lick. My son also has OCD’s so it was funny to see him laugh and say, Mom it is okay! Instead of reaching for a wipe. Thanks for helping make him smile and laugh! Ralphie will be missed!!!

  • Kim Carson

    What a great dog Ralphie was. More than just a dog! Let all the happiness he brought you on earth, continue through the memories you have of what a special doggie he was. He made you, really all of us, laugh smile and laugh when we saw him or had any kind of encounter with him. Allow him to continue to still bring smiles and laughter into your life whenever you think of him….his little face is making me smile just thinking about him.

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