May 28, 2024

Walt Garrison, a rugged running back renowned for his tenacity with the Dallas Cowboys during the 1960s and ’70s and an esteemed member of the ProRodeo Hall of Fame, has passed away at the age of 79. Hailing from Denton, Texas, Garrison, a genuine cowboy, achieved a distinctive status as a cult hero in his home state. The Cowboys officially confirmed his demise on Thursday via their team website, without specifying the time, place, or cause of death.

Garrison, with brown hair covering his ears and a football tucked under his right arm, smiles as he poses on a grassy expanse near a stadium in his Dallas Cowboys uniform. He wears no helmet.

A symbolic figure for his team and a resolute ball carrier, Garrison epitomized the Texan spirit, akin to the iconic blue star adorning the midfield of the Cowboys’ stadium turf. Often sporting a wad of tobacco between his cheek and gum, a characteristic featured in his enduring Skoal smokeless tobacco television ads, Garrison spoke with an accent resonating like a pedal-steel guitar. His wardrobe included cowboy hats seemingly as expansive as the Rio Grande, and he habitually carried a sharp knife in his back pocket for whittling sticks.

In a documentary chronicling his career, Garrison described himself as a country boy, distinctly separate from city life. Disdaining urban environments like downtown Dallas with its crowds and traffic lights, he expressed a preference for the open expanse of rural settings.

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