JUPITER, Fla., May 15 (UPI) -- Charlie Hayden, who is credited with inventing an offshore fishing bait made from dead mullet, died Friday in Jupiter, Fla. He was 78.
Hayden's death came after complications from surgery, The Palm Beach Post reported.
Hayden's split-tailed mullet bait looks like a live mullet and attracts offshore fish.
Through his company, Splittails Trolling Baits in Riviera Beach, Fla., which he operated from 1976 until 1992, Hayden shipped trolling baits throughout the world.
He had traveled the globe fishing for marlin, bluefin tuna and other game fish and was a big fan of duck hunting and Labrador retrievers, which he raised and trained.
Hayden was honored for his contributions to fishing last year at the Legendary Captains & Crew event at the International Game Fish Association Fishing Hall of Fame & Museum in Dania Beach.
Hayden, a native of Rehoboth Beach, Del., was a student at Temple University when he came to Miami to work at the Fontainebleau Hotel during a break and a boat captain asked him to help as a mate.
Hayden loved fishing and stayed in South Florida, his wife, Maggie Hayden, said.