TONY GUTIERREZ | ASSOCIATED PRESS Ron Springs, right, and former Cowboys teammate Everson Walls created a foundation to promote organ donation via

Ron Springs, Former Dallas Cowboys Fullback, Passes Away At Age 54

Ron Springs, former Dallas Cowboys running back and father of Shawn Springs, passed away on Thursday after three years in a coma. He was 54.

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Ron Springs, Former Dallas Cowboys FullBack, Passes Away At Age 54

After three years in a coma, former Ohio State running back and Dallas Cowboys fullback Ron Springs passed away on Thursday at age 54. Springs fell into a coma in 2007 after surgery on his arm went wrong and never regained consciousness.

Springs' battle with diabetes, a disease he was diagnosed with in 1990, is well-documented and, in 2007, he received a new kidney from teammate and friend Everson Walls. Before Walls stepped forward to donate his kidney, Springs' son, NFL cornerback Shawn Springs, offered to give-up football and donate his own kidney to save his father's life. Walls confirmed Springs' passing on Thursday night.

"I was shocked… We were hoping he would be able to come out of this.  His family is very spiritual, and they truly believe he is in a better place."

Springs was drafted by the Dallas Cowboys in the fifth round of the 1979 NFL Draft after spending three years at Ohio State. He spent six seasons with the Cowboys and two with the Tampa Bay Buccaneers before leaving the game.

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