Robin’s Nest

Living on a farm growing up, Rocky had a horse and loved riding, playing cowboy & Indians with his cousins, desperately trying to win every game. In 1961, Rocky decided to bring a horse he owned to Monroe, Louisiana for his wife’s riding pleasure, which was the first of many horses they would own. She, as well as the children became very interested in competing in horse shows and horse games and were very fond of trail rides. While he still owned Medical Arts Pharmacy, he gave each of the children and his wife their own horse. It was a lot of fun, the entire family bonded as they enjoyed the sport and competing in horse shows. All of their combined winnings were rewarded with over nine hundred trophies.

Robin's-NestIn 1963, Rocky purchased a 20 acre farm in West Monroe, Louisiana, which he named Robin’s Nest Stables. The Cottage had 3 bedrooms and was used as a camp. The farm had all the conveniences, games, etc. you could ask for and want to entertain the children, family, friends, business clients and even a State Governor, City Judge, District Attorney and other dignitaries. He built a barn for the horses with 8 stalls, a feed room, hay loft and even a bathroom for the children and their friends. The property consisted of a couple of fish-stocked ponds, a dirt bike race track, not to mention 10 motorcycles, one for each family member and a few extra for friends who came to visit, and of course, the horses for everyone’s enjoyment. The Robin children always had lots of friends and invited them to share in the fun.

His motorcycle club friends would also meet at the Robins Nest Stables on Sundays for some serious dirt bike competitions on the race track on the farm or hill climbing in the hills nearby. Of course due to his relentless competitive nature, any one coming close to beating Rocky at anything was in for a surprise and a very hard struggle. He never gave up, but of course after a good workout, they all enjoyed a good meal, whether it was BBQ or boiled Crawfish and always lots of beer, laughter and fun with all the wives and children joining in.

When the family moved from Monroe, Louisiana to Lafayette, Louisiana, Rocky decided to get into the race horse business, buying thoroughbred race horses, with Billy Trotter, one of his friends who along with another respected friend named B.I. Moody owned the Evangeline Downs Horse Race Track in Carencro, Louisiana. They raced them at the race tracks in Louisiana and other tracks around the country. The sign at the Robin’s Nest Stables was unique in that he designed a robin sitting on the nest with 4 blue eggs in the nest with him, which at the time, was a representation of his first four children.

horsesracingHe began breeding horses as well as racing them and his investment grew to a heard of about 20 horses. Once again, he determined that the profitable part of the horse business was in the breeding industry. He set out to accomplish that, by buying brood mares, a stallion for stud service and although he had his trainers’ license, he never did care nor had the time to train horses. Robin’s Nest Farm had a race track that provided training, 3 horse starting gates, a barn with 30 stalls, which he used to board the horses for trainers including a riding horse that belonged to his great friend, B.I. Moody. Additionally, he had all support personnel to run this business. His staff consisted of a horse trainer who also managed the farms full time operations, and in addition he had an exercise jockey, a maintenance crew and other support employees that the manager felt necessary to give other horse owners the best care possible in order to protect and preserve their investment.

rockywithhorsesAs a breeder, he received income every time a horse won a race, whether they were horses that he bred and raced or horses that he bred and were bought from Robin’s Nest and raced by other owners. He repeated his ability to analyze and evaluate the good business practices he used long before with N-JOY Records, Medical Arts Pharmacy and all his other businesses. He knew the best avenue to take, to make money with the least amount of expenditures and lots of marketing exposure, however, the business never quite brought in the kind of return envisioned at the time of investment, in fact it was barely breaking even. One could say, more importantly, this investment did pay off as it created beautiful memories for the entire family.

A divorce mandated a settlement of all assets and he decided it was best to get out of the horse business.

Rocky created so many different interests, it is nearly impossible to list all of them, both in business or for his personal pleasure. The most memorable endeavors include his passion for motorcycle riding, both on dirt bikes and cruising on his Harley Davidson street bike. He enjoyed the challenges of hill climbing and racing on dirt track courses with his off road bike, always giving it his all to win. He also owned a customized chopper with an 18 inch rack of the front wheel that he designed to stand out in any crowd. He was proud to ride as the leader of a motorcycle club that included people in professions from many different walks of life.

Another type of riding that he enjoyed was Trail Rides intended for horse lovers. These rides were mostly short distances or up to 30 miles. Some included overnight camping trips, enjoying the quiet of the night under the stars, with his family and friends sleeping in the back of the truck while Rocky played his guitar. In anticipation, the others usually joined in by singing along or playing their own musical instruments and it was always an exciting and fun time.

Rocky also enjoyed drag racing on one of his bikes that he had specifically built for competition in a certain class just as he did with his race cars. Another love in his life was automobiles. He had a fascination and appreciation for them, which led him to collect 8 cars at one time. He also owned 2 boats, 10 motorcycles, 25 thorough bred race horses and 5 quarter horses. Speaking of drag racing, when he moved back to Lafayette, Louisiana, he purchased two Corvettes, one for pleasure driving and the other for racing. Although he won races, one night it ended when he had an accident and totaled one of his Corvettes in November 1979. This incident caused him to reach the decision to sell the Corvette that he raced and decided he had enough and he gave the other one away.

Everyone that knows him knows that he has a zest for living and a great sense of humor. Rocky and one of his friends decided to open a lounge which he named “The Office Lounge” to give his patrons a proper excuse to tell their spouses, which was; that they were late coming home because they were at “The Office”. His suggestion to hire a good marketing and P.R. person paid off, as it became extremely popular. Later, he sold his half of the business to his partner. The smoke filled rooms, the life style and the long hours of having to spend there became less tolerable for him as time went by. Each time Rocky appeared for a visit, he was always invited to sing along with the band currently playing. Of course, since his love of music was evident, he enjoyed that immensely.

Of course with all those interests and activities consuming his life, he definitely needed a get-a-way place for peace of mind. A camp by 3-Mile Lake that he named “Robin’s Roost” was just what the doctor ordered. It was a great place that offered relaxation, fun and serenity for everyone. The camp had sleeping accommodations for 12 people, 2 Sea Do’s Water Toys, a party platoon boat and all the conveniences for an enjoyable vacation. Another favorite vacation spot was Destin, Florida, where he owned 2 Condominiums for many years. He also owned a house and 2 more Condominiums, in Clearwater, Florida, for his entire family to enjoy whenever time would permit. In the off season, when he or his family members were not using these vacation condo’s, he rented them out.

Eventually, Rocky moved back to Lafayette, Louisiana, from Clearwater, Florida and bought another camp by the water in Butte LaRose, Louisiana. Again, he added all the things for entertainment and fun a person could want, like; game machines, pool table, four wheelers, a party boat, 2 watercrafts, a hot tub and much more. Rocky enjoyed furnishing a place for everyone to enjoy, it was his nature to be generous. His children liked to frequent the place since it was not far from Lafayette, especially Derek, he would stay there for more than a week at a time. He was the only child that was not married and loved to bring his many friends there who enjoyed fishing in the lake, parties on the boat, BBQ’s on the deck, water skiing, playing the games, relaxing and living life.