A Louisiana native and Air Force veteran, Beard served as Fair Grounds' director of simulcasting from the early 1990s until earlier this year. During his racing career. he also served as an official at Jefferson Downs, Ak-Sar-Ben, Canterbury Downs, and Scarborough Downs, and wrote for Daily Racing Form and The Times-Picayune.
Raymond J. Beard, veteran racing official who worked at Fair Grounds for more than a decade, died Dec. 3 at his home, one day before what would have been his 62nd birthday.