The show has slowly revealed details, most recently that Jack died while his kids are still teenagers. Mandy Moore, who plays Jack's wife Rebecca on the NBC drama, has warned readers to stop trying to figure out how Jack dies because we won't find out for a "long, long time" but we're not that great at following advice when it comes to this show (except "Always have tissues.")
A popular theory that Jack dies in the terrorist attacks of September 11 was recently debunked with the reveal that Jack dies in the early to mid-90s, but we've come up with a few new ideas of how the Pearson patriarch lost his life.
1. Construction accident
Jack may have transferred from working on construction sites to managing projects in the office to bring in more money for his family, but that doesn't stop this from being a plausible way he could have died. Maybe Jack was doing an inspection for a project when the worst happened and he fell through loose floorboards or some other horrific accident.
2. Getting mugged/lethal fight
We've already seen that Jack has quite a temper. Is it possible that he got into a fight? We can totally see Jack playing the hero in a gas station robbery or if he saw someone being attacked but wasn't able to take the assailant down. So far, clues have given the impression that the Pearson family lost Jack suddenly. It would make sense that he was murdered; it would make the kids feel like their father was taken from them.
3. Heart attack
This would be the most boring and predictable way for Jack to go, but you have to admit the man is under a lot of stress most of the time. It could also explain why Kate (Chrissy Metz) was so adamant about Toby (Chris Sullivan) getting heart surgery to ensure he didn't have another cardiac episode. If Toby's heart condition hit that close to home, it could also be another reason why Kate imagined Jack's funeral during her first therapeutic exercise class in her immersive weight loss experience.
4. Car accident
Wouldn't it be a terribly tragic thing if Jack gave up drinking to be a better man for his kids but was then killed by a drunk driver on the way home? The show does love to peddle in the ironic twist, so we wouldn't put it past the writers to take Jack out this way.
5. Cancer or another serious illness
Maybe we are completely wrong about the sudden aspect of Jack's death. Randall (Sterling K. Brown) seemed so confident that he could handle William (Ron Cephas Jones) dying right in front of him that maybe he's had experience with it before. Perhaps Jack doesn't die quickly at all but finds out he has an advanced form of cancer and the real reason Randall is struggling with William is because it feels too much like deja vu.
Bonus: He's not dead at all, but hiding out in witness protection
Yes, this is farfetched, but hear us out. We've already established that Jack loves to play the hero, so maybe he gets involved in a big case that means he has to go into hiding to protect his family from harm (which is the only reason he would ever agree to be away from them). Rebecca and Miguel (Jon Huertas) got married to sell the idea that Jack is really dead, but none of the kids know or else they'd go looking for him. Let's face it, Rebecca has been known to keep a secret or two.
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This Is Us airs Tuesdays at 9/8c on NBC.