The Richmond medical examiner told the New York Times it found signs of chronic traumatic encephalopathy, caused by blows to the head.
Easterling died in April after shooting himself, he had suffered from dementia for a long time.
Mary Ann Easterling, Ray's wife, says she now has some relief, knowing her suspicions have been confirmed.
She also says her husband suffered numerous concussions as a player, many went undiagnosed or ignored. Easterling is one of 3,000 people filing a lawsuit against the NFL for not properly dealing with player's head traumas.