Frank Tancredi
Biographical information

7 March 1945


1 June 2005



Cause of death:

Hanged by Company agent.

Physical description




1, 2, 4

First appearance:

Riots, Drills and the Devil,
Part 2

Last appearance:


Episode count:


Other information
Created by:

Karyn Usher

Portrayed by:

John Heard

Frank Tancredi was the governor of the state of Illinois and the father of Sara Tancredi. His strict policies on crime earned him the nickname "Frontier Justice Frank". He strongly supported being tough on crime, backing the electric-chair penalty given to Lincoln Burrows. He strictly disapproved of his daughter's decision to work at Fox River State Penitentiary because of the obvious dangers and his secret worry that Sara would return to her old drug habits. He eventually was promoted to Vice-President of the US after Caroline Reynolds proceeded to president. Due to dodgy links and alliances, he was a target for people, and was eventually found dead. His death was supposed to be a suicide, as he was found hanging by his tie, but Sara and Michael Scofield suspected foul-play by 'The Company'.



Season 1Edit

He travelled to Fox River when his daughter's life was threatened during a prison riot. After the crisis had passed, Tancredi seemed more interested in reminding her how unsafe work in a prison could be than expressing relief at her safety. This incident further strained their relationship.

When Sara asked him to review Lincoln Burrows' case on the scheduled day of his execution, he ultimately decided not to grant clemency, at the request of the Vice President who worked for the Company. Tancredi later revealed to his daughter that he did not review the information she gave him from Lincoln Burrows' attorneys. His reason for his refusal to grant clemency was linked to Vice President Caroline Reynolds. Tancredi has since been suggested by several press sources as a potential Vice Presidential candidate when Vice President Reynolds ran for the Presidency.

Soon after, Reynolds was sworn in as the President after the sudden death of President Mills.

Season 2Edit

After paying for his daughter's bail for release, Tancredi reveals her that he would soon be sworn in as the next Vice President of the United States. Later, Tancredi is encouraged by a political strategist to distance himself from his daughter, which he refuses to do. He visits her at her apartment, and she apologizes for the problems she has caused for him, but also reasserts her belief that Lincoln Burrows is innocent. This prompts Tancredi to take a second look at the Burrows case, and he is shocked to learn of the deaths of Nick Savrinn and Veronica Donovan. He wonders if everything he's learning is somehow connected to the Burrows case. The political strategist suggests he let it go.

Frank Tancredi hanged by Company agent.

In a later episode, while discussing his forthcoming Senate confirmation hearing with the strategist, Tancredi sees Agent Kellerman, who he recognizes from Sara's apartment. This encounter convinces him that Sara may be right about the conspiracy after all, and calls Sara to warn her that her new "friend" is not to be trusted. Soon after, President Reynolds abruptly withdraws the nomination, despite sufficient support in the Senate for his confirmation. Sara found Frank dead shortly afterward in the governor's residence.


Season 2Edit

Normal ep218 068
Frank Tancredi's grave

Although Agent Kim's man made it look like he had hanged himself, Sara refuses to believe that her father could have committed suicide. According to Agent Kim, he had become a liability to the Conspiracy by getting too close to Kellerman's secret, and thus could not be left alive. Aldo Burrows later tells Lincoln that Frank Tancredi acquired an important telephone recording between Caroline Reynolds and Terrence Steadman that took place two weeks after Steadman's reported death. Agent Blondie later said that he worked with Frank to Sara. Sara made it look like a fight and she escaped him.

Season 4Edit

Frank Tancredi mentioned as number 8 on the death list from Michael Scofield.

Frank was on Michael Scofield's list in the episode Selfless for people which deaths General Jonathan Krantz was responsible for. Frank was mentioned by Sara as doing things for other people and then taking care off his own problems in Just Business. Sara would also tell Krantz that she wanted to know who killed her father.


Personality and traitsEdit

Frank Tancredi is a very powerful governor in the US. Physically a short man with a big personality, Frank Tancredi is a well reputated governor in the United States, believing in the justice and the death penalty. He is very distant from his daughter although he seems to deeply loving her but never had much time for her, he began to doubting of Reynolds's real goal and began to gather intel about The Company before being killed. It to note that his daughter insisted that he had never had suicidal tendencies.


  • Frank means "honest".[1]

Trivia Edit

Sink23 Caroline 1
Caroline Reynolds blackmails Frank Tancredi.
  • In season 3, Gretchen Morgan mentioned Home Alone. This could be a reference to Frank, as his actor John Heard portrayed Peter McCallister in the Home Alone movies.
  • He died aged 60 according his grave.
  • According to Lincoln's game counterpart, Frank is 10 days and 35 years older than Lincoln.
  • Frank wasn't a criminal at all for putting Lincoln Burrows on the electric chair. He was forced to do this under Caroline Reynolds orders, and thus also the Company's orders.
  • Kellerman said that Tancredi shouldn't be dead, but William Kim told him that he saw something and it was needed before he discovered about the Lincoln Burrows conspiracy. However, Tancredi died, because he saw Kellerman.
  • Both Frank and Michael's grave were seen in Prison Break.
  • Frank appeared in 10 episodes (not counting his flashback appearance) as much as Sammy and Sona Inmate without shirt.
    • Frank is indirectly responsible for Sammy's death, since his daughter Sara freed Michael.
    • Frank is the only non-antagonist of the three (Sammy and Sona Inmate without shirt were antagonists).
    • Frank is the only one of the three to appear in 2 seasons (season 1 and 2).
    • Frank is the only of the three not to be killed by a main character.
  • Brad Bellick was indirect responsible for his death, which is ironic, since the fact that Tancredi agreed with Bellick's tear gas ideas in Fox River. Bellick did meet Sara Tancredi when she had problems with her morphine and Bellick told her that she could be a doctor in Fox River. Again ironic, Bellick was responsible for the fact that Sara was in Fox River, not Pope. Following the Fox River Eight escape, Sara did meet Kellerman and Kellerman was later seen by Tancredi and thus killed under Company orders.
  • Frank has met Bellick, Kellerman and Sara.
    • He was aware of Lincoln, since Sara mentioned him.
    • It's highly likely that he is aware of Michael, Sucre, C-Note and Abruzzi, since they were Fox River Eight members.

See alsoEdit

Notes and referencesEdit