Former Dallas Cowboys tight end and firefighter Gavin Escobar, 31, was one of two rock climbers found dead after an apparent fall in southern California this week, officials reported Thursday.
Cal Fire said in a statement that a climbing accident involving two people was reported around 12 p.m. Wednesday near Tahquitz Rock in the San Bernardino National Forest. Firefighters hiked to the spot and found both climbers deceased. Their bodies were airlifted by helicopter.
The victims apparently died while climbing a “rock face,” but details weren’t immediately available. Weather was not cited as a factor, even though it had been raining.
The Long Beach Fire Department, where Escobar had worked as a firefighter since February, issued a statement Thursday announcing his death:
With its steep granite cliffs, Tahquitz Rock is a popular destination for rock climbers. It was also the scene of another double fatality in 2003.
Escobar played football at San Diego State, then from 2013 to 2016, he was a tight end for the Cowboys. He tallied 30 catches for 333 yards and 8 touchdowns for the team.
Escobar also played for the Kansas City Chiefs, the Baltimore Ravens, the Cleveland Browns and the Miami Dolphins. His last year with the NFL was 2018.