Jack de Coup-Crank



Jack de Coup-Crank was born in Caracas, Venezuela in the Policlinica Caracas. His American mother was born in Cuba and his British father was General Manager and Vice President for Electric Light Company in Caracas. The family lived in Campo Alegre and Jack attended Kindergarten through 6th grade at Campo Alegre School. He then continued school in Vermont followed by England where his parents returned in 1947. When he completed high school in 1950, he worked as a clerk at Barclay’s Bank in London until he was “called up” (drafted) into the Royal Army Service Corps. His father died suddenly in 1951 and when Jack finished his army duty in 1952 his mother, sister and he returned to the U.S. eventually settling in California. Jack entered University of California at Los Angeles in 1953. He was deferred from the draft until he married his wife Shirley in 1954 and was drafted into the U.S. Army. Following training at Fort Ord, he was stationed in Germany where he became a naturalized U.S. citizen in 1955. Until that time, he was a British subject through his father’s line.

In 1959 he joined the City of Los Angeles Police Department. In 1961, he became acquainted with the Jimmie Angel story when he investigated the theft from Marie Angel of Jimmie Angel’s personal belongings – log books, passports, photographs. Jack contacted Karen Angel in 1997 when he read the obituary for her father Clyde Marshall Angel in the local newspaper. Jack’s narrative of the theft investigation is one of the more fascinating documents in the JAHP Archive.

Jack was elected to the JAHP Board in 1999. In 2007, Carlos Freeman’s stepdaughter Betty Christian mentioned to Karen Angel that she had attended Campo Alegre School. Karen reunited Jack and Betty via email and a reunion of their classmates was organized in Houston, Texas.

Retired and living in Paradise California, Jack continues to work on retrieving the missing Jimmie Angel documents and providing Spanish to English translations for the JAHP.