Ron Lester Dies; Varsity Blues Star Was 45

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Actor Ron Lester, who is best known for playing Billy Bob in Varsity Blues, has died at a Dallas hospital, according to his agent. 

He was just 45 years old.

Ron Lester

The actor, who had been in declining health, passed away peacefully shortly before 9 p.m. Friday, Dave Bradley posted on Facebook.

Around 8:30 p.m., Ron was taken off life support and was given medicine for any pain as his family and friends gathered around him. 

Lester, who also had roles in Not Yet Another Teen Movie, Freaks and Geeks and Popular, will be forever beloved to fans as Billy Bob.

The beefy, affable lineman was one of many colorful characters in what became a sports / coming-of-age classic from the late 1990s.

Lester (69) appears below with Blues co-stars Scott Caan, Jon Voight, Eliel Swinton, James Van Der Beek and the late Paul Walker.

Varsity Blues Cast

Most recently, he appeared in an episode of CSI:NY and in a film last year called Racing Legacy, which he also wrote and directed.

He had been hospitalized back in November, sources report.

Because of problems with his liver and kidneys, he was back in the hospital earlier this year, and had been there for the last four months.

Sadly, Ron's list of health woes didn't even end at that point.

In January, Lester revealed to celebrity news site TMZ that he also had problems with his heart.

The actor, known in part for his weight, was said to be over 500 pounds, though he had gastric bypass surgery in 2001 and lost 350 pounds.

Despite his health problems, Lester had reason for optimism.

He posted on Twitter about his fiancee Jennifer, saying:

"I've found happiness and Love for the first time!" 

This was just a few months ago.

May he rest in peace.

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