NAPLES, Fla - A Naples man is fighting for his life. Mike "Captain Raymo" Raymond was a commercial pilot. Six weeks ago, he suffered a massive heart attack while on a layover in Mississippi.
Mike underwent a valve replacement and double bypass surgery. "We're lucky he's still here because usually when that type of valve bursts patients do not make it so we're very grateful he is still here and just want to continue to support them in anyway we can," says Regina Moak.
Regina is a friend and co-worker of Mike's wife Julie, a third grade teacher at Sea Gate Elementary School in Naples. The minute they found out what had happened they started looking for ways to help.
"I couldn't do this without them. They've been there every step of the way and it's been a really tough journey," says Julie. "From the minute it happened they've been there and they've been there for over six weeks now and I feel like I hit the floor and they caught me."
Mike spent 30 days in ICU in Mississippi before he was medflighted back home to Naples. He's currently in critical condition at NCH. The family is staying positive, but the biggest blow may have come just three days after Mike's heart attack. Julie received a phone call from Mike's airline. They told her that he was being terminated and he would no longer have health insurance.
"They literally had to pick me off the bathroom floor," Julie recalls.
Mike and Julie have three kids. A daughter heading to medical school, a daughter in college and a son at Barron Collier High School. They say their dad is their rock and seeing him lay in a hospital bed has been the hardest thing they've ever seen in their life.
They've created this Facebook page to keep family and friends update on his progress:
Doctors told the family from the start that it was not likely Mike would survive, but he has, and now he's earned the nickname Miracle Mike.
Teachers at Sea Gate Elementary School have created the Captain Raymo Family Fund at First Citizens Bank.
You can drop off monetary donations at any First Citizens Bank location or mail a check to:
First Citizens Bank
Attn: Captain Raymo Family Fund
1125 Immokalee Road
Naples, FL 34110