TAMPA, Fla. (WFLA) — Diane Pfister still can’t believe her friend and long-time colleague, 74-year-old Robert A. “Bobby” Raymond is gone.
Raymond was a long time horse trainer at Tampa Bay Downs.
“Oh, everybody knows Bobby,” Pfister said. “There are people that have known him 30 years longer than I have and I have known probably known him 30 years. Bobby Raymond was just one hell of a good man. And, like I said, if you had to go to war, you wanted Bobby Raymond at your side. That’s for sure. He was just that kind of person.”
According to a release from the Tampa Bay Downs, Bobby and his wife Kathy went to Mobbly Beach Park in Oldsmar on Wednesday when he waded into the water. He had a cut on his leg which, apparently was infected by bacteria.
He returned to the track on Thursday to train his horses. On Friday, his condition worsened. He was rushed to the hospital when he started shivering and his leg became inflamed.
He passed away around 1:30 a.m. Sunday.
His son, Rob, remembered his father.
“He never stopped fighting. His heart was so big,” the younger Raymond said. “He hardly ever took a minute for himself. He had a great love for the animals and all the people he was involved with. he never had a problem helping someone on the backstretch who was in need.”
Clarence Brown met Raymond on a professional basis, but the two quickly became friends. He last saw Bobby on Thursday.
“We were there, you know what I’m saying, talking, making noise, having a shot of honey whiskey, which he loved,” Brown said. “I saw he had a little bit of swelling in his legs.”
Dr. Meghan Martin is a emergency pediatric physician at Johns Hopkins All Children’s Hospital in St. Petersburg. She sees cases of sepsis on a regular basis and there are some common symptoms.
“They will say, I just don’t feel good. You can have a high heart rate with a low blood pressure. Most of them will either have a fever or a very low body temperature,” Dr. Martin said. “They can be short of breath, they can look pale, sweaty clammy.”
Dr. Martin said bay, gulf and lake waters can be dangerous for those with open wounds.
“There are bacteria that live in the water,” Dr. Martin said. “Vibrio is one of them and these bacteria can be very serious.”
She added an average of 270,000 people die each year from septic shock.