A Buffalo father who struggled to live for three months after a gunman fired a bullet into his abdomen during a street robbery died Monday night in Erie County Medical Center.
Bobby Andrews, 28, a Highgate Avenue resident and former assembly-line worker, was shot by an unknown gunman who demanded cash as Andrews left a bar about 3:30 a.m. Nov. 13 on Kensington Avenue near Olympic Avenue. After shooting Andrews, the robber made off with $300 to $400 from his pocket.
Police do not believe the slaying was drug or gang related. No arrest has been made.
"It appears he was an innocent victim of a robbery," Homicide Squad Detective Sgt. Daniel Rinaldo said Tuesday. "He never improved to the point that he could leave the hospital."
For the past three months, Andrews has been in excruciating pain, with bullet fragments lodged in his pelvis. The bullet struck the main artery in his left leg, so doctors were forced to amputate.
Andrews, once 6 feet tall and 350 pounds, was reduced to 192 pounds. His body was hooked up to an intravenous tube and a ventilator.
Family members said they had been thrilled when he awoke and began talking after he was unconscious for two months after the shooting.
"I'm just hurting," said his mother, Yvonne Washington, wiping tears from behind her gold-rimmed glasses.
"I always prepared myself for the fact that he might not make it, but I prayed that he would come home. . . . He used to tell me, 'Mom, I'm in pain. I need my medicine.' . . . I think he held on as long as he could and he just got tired."
On Tuesday, his mother sat in the living room of the University District home that she once shared with her youngest child.
"He was a momma's boy," Washington said, leafing through photo albums.
"He acted tough, but he was like a big teddy bear."
Born in Buffalo, Andrews attended Riverside High School. He was employed for about nine years at a temporary work agency, taking odd jobs as an assembly-line worker and janitor.
A doting father to his 7-year-old son, Brandon Andrews, he taught the boy how to write his letters and the two often played videogames and enjoyed dining at Chinese buffet restaurants.
"I'm gonna miss my daddy," said Brandon, as he held a pencil, drawing a cross in his notepad as a memorial to his father. "He always would be with me and we'd do stuff together."
In addition to his mother and son, Bobby Andrews leaves behind his father, Bobby Washington of Buffalo; a sister, Sharon Butler of Lynchburg, Va.; a stepsister, Nicole Keith of Buffalo; his grandmother, Lucille Grimes of Washington, D.C.; his stepgrandfather, Boyce Washington Sr.; and special friend, Colette Alexander of Buffalo.
Funeral arrangements are incomplete.