"Hollywood" Raiford opens up about accidental shooting

(WMC-TV) - Robert "Hollywood" Raiford was released from the hospital around two o'clock Monday afternoon. Shortly after he was released, he spoke exclusively with Action News 5 about the shooting that sent him there.

After a long night at work November 19, Raiford said he had money in his pocket and dozed off with his gun nearby.

He said the gun went off, but God had a reason to keep him alive.

Behind his black sunglasses, tears welled in his eyes, as he pondered why God spared his life.

"I get a little emotional," he said. "Prayer goes up; praise comes down."

He said this second chance at life made him realize how much he loves his family, friends and Memphis - and how much they all love him.

"You just don't know how much people love you."

The downtown nightclub owner returned to the Kimball Avenue home where he accidentally shot himself earlier this month as an Action News 5 camera rolled.

That Saturday morning, Raiford said he pulled out the gun to protect himself because he was carrying a large amount of money. He said he fell asleep in his bed with the gun near his chest and then heard a loud noise.

"All I heard was 'Pow!' I laid there for five hours," he said. "I just couldn't get up."

With a bullet hole through his torso, he finally mustered the strength to call 911 five hours later. Raiford said the fact he didn't bleed to death was a miracle.

"It had to have been a miracle because the way I was laying and the way I was bleeding, it stopped the blood," he said. "I lost more blood getting up out of here than I did in five hours."

Raiford said God has a hand in everything and calls life a gift.

"Sometimes, bad things happen for a reason."

Raiford says his 2nd Street disco is one place where the races truly come together in Memphis. He said maybe God wasn't ready for that to end.

"I'll be at Raiford's this Friday and Saturday."

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