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Former Dallas Cowboys Running Back Marion Barber III Died From Heatstroke

"Mr. Barber was known to exercise in sauna-like conditions," wrote the coroner
Photo: Ken Durden | Shutterstock

On June 1, former Dallas Cowboys running back Marion Barber III was found dead in his Frisco apartment. Barber's apartment was locked from the inside, and the Frisco police responded to a wellness call when they discovered the 38-year-old.

According to The Collin County Medical Examiner's Office, Barber died from heatstroke. When officers arrived on the scene, the apartment's thermostat was at 91 degrees with the heat on. "Mr. Barber was known to exercise in sauna-like conditions," wrote the coroner (via USA Today). There was also exercise equipment in the apartment, and the bathtub faucets were running.

"We are heartbroken by the tragic death of Mario Barber III," wrote the Cowboys in an official statement on Twitter. "Mario was an old-school, hard-nosed football player who ran with the will to win every down. He had a passion for the game and love for his coaches and teammates. Our hearts go out to Marion's family and friends during this difficult time."

Born in Minnesota, Barber was picked by the Cowboys in the fourth round of the 2005 NFL Draft. He was selected to the Pro Bowl in 2007 and played for the Cowboys until joining the Chicago Bears in 2011 for his final season in the NFL.

Heatstroke is a present and real danger, even indoors. According to the CDC, here are some of the warning signs for heatstroke:

An extremely high body temperature (above 103°F)
Red, hot, and dry skin (no sweating)
Rapid, strong pulse
Throbbing headache

If you notice any of these warning signs in someone, the CDC recommends the following:

Get the victim to a shady area.
Cool the victim rapidly, using whatever methods you can. For example, immerse the victim in a tub of cool water; place the person in a cool shower; spray the victim with cool water from a garden hose; sponge the person with cool water; or if the humidity is low, wrap the victim in a cool, wet sheet and fan him or her vigorously.
Monitor body temperature and continue cooling efforts until the body temperature drops to 101-102°F.
If emergency medical personnel are delayed, call the hospital emergency room for further instructions.
Do not give the victim alcohol to drink.
Get medical assistance as soon as possible.

For more, check out Local Profile's previous coverage on how to fight the summer heat.