Through the Miami Dolphins' media relations, Ricky Williams says there is no truth to a Dallas man's claims that he is the running back's estranged father.
But that hasn't stopped Ross Williams one bit. The 68-year-old retiree says that in the mid-'70s, he had a two-year relationship with Ricky's mother, Sandy Williams, while they both worked at a Dallas nightclub. (She has denied ever living in Dallas.)
Ross Williams says he's tracked Ricky's career from California to Texas to Florida, that he's tried several times to speak with the running back, and that he just wants his son to know he loves him.
Oh, and he wants $2.5 million too.
Patrick Michels, a reporter with our sister paper in Dallas, broke the story.
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After years of unanswered birthday cards, dead-end road trips to stadiums and, he says, threats from Sandy, Ross Williams put his grievance down in a lawsuit last week, filed pro se in the Northern District Court of Texas. The former airline worker, music promoter and guitarist is asking for $2.5 million in unspecified damages from Ricky and Sandy Williams.
Really though, he says, it's not about the money. "I've been dragging this for years, and I'm tired of it," Williams says. "My family does not want me to let it go." What he wants is a DNA test: "Eyeball to eyeball, cheek to cheek. I wouldn't have it done any other way."
Ross Williams also claims he suggested the names for Ricky and his twin sister, Cassie. (Though his lawsuit alleges, "She never informed me she was pregnant.") He says he actually spoke with Ricky in Baton Rouge, right after Hurricane Katrina, which Ross calls "that real bad tornado."
For Ricky, one of the most introspective and frank professional athletes of all time, the issue of his father is a sensitive one. In Run, Ricky, Run, a documentary produced for ESPN's 30 for 30 series that premiered in Miami earlier this year, Ricky confides that was sexually abused by his father, Errick Williams Sr., when he was 6 years old -- just before his parents split up.
Mostly, this is just sad and disgusting.