Former Cowboy Ron Springs Dead at 54

Ron Springs, kidney transplant recipient, dies from heart attack

/ Author:  / Reviewed by: Joseph V. Madia, MD

(RxWiki News) Ron Springs, former running back for the Dallas Cowboys, died last Thursday from a heart attack, according to the Cowboys website. He was 54 years old.

Ever since his football career ended, Springs has had many health problems. In 1990, he was diagnosed with diabetes. Then, in 2004, his kidney failed. A few years later, former Cowboys teammate Everson Walls saved Springs' life by donating his kidney.

Together, the two teammates founded the Ron Springs & Everson Walls Gift for Life Foundation to increase awareness about kidney disease and organ donation.

"Living donors like Everson Walls save lives through the gift of kidney donations," says Michelle Segovia of the Texas Organ Sharing Alliance. "There are now more than 88,000 people awaiting a kidney transplant in this country. To learn more about living and deceased organ donation, please visit You have the power to save lives!"

Soon after his kidney transplant, Springs had to undergo an unrelated surgery for a cyst on his elbow. He fell into a coma during the surgery, never to wake up again.

According to an article in the New York Times, Springs' wife Adrianne sued the two doctors for causing brain damage to her husband during his cyst surgery.

"The Springs family is profoundly grieving the loss of Ron Springs," said the Springs family attorney, Les Weisbrod, in an email. "His body is with the Dallas County Medical Examiner's office. There will be no further statements until the Medical Examiner has concluded his work.

The lawsuit will continue but damages the Springs family can recover will be further limited because there is a $250,000 non-economic damages cap and a medical malpractice case death cap which cannot exceed $1.7 million including the $250,000 non-economic limit, plus recovery of past medical expenses.

Ron Springs' death is truly a tragedy which could have been prevented had he received appropriate medical care back in October 2007."

Ron Springs grew up in Williamsburg, Virginia and played college football at Ohio State University. Before ending his career in Tampa Bay, he played six seasons with the Dallas Cowboys from 1979 to 1984.

He is survived by his wife, Adriane, his son Shawn Springs, an NFL cornerback, and his daughters Ayra Springs Foster and Ashley.

Reviewed by: 
Review Date: 
May 16, 2011
Last Updated:
May 18, 2011