Grieving mother of fatal Miami Gardens hit-and-run victim makes plea on his 36th birthday


The grieving mother of an AmericanAirlines Arena employee who was killed in a hit-and-run in Miami Gardens is asking for the public’s help to find the driver responsible for her son’s death.

Kesta Nelson does everything possible to honor Stephan Maze, her late son, including setting up a roadside memorial in the area of North Miami Avenue and Northwest 189th Terrace, where he was killed.

“I ask all the police in Miami: please help me,” Nelson said. “As a mother, as a father, you know what I’m going through. My heart is broken.”

Nelson said she has been living with an unbearable pain since her son, who worked security at the AmericanAirlines Arena, was killed in March. On Wednesday, she wrapped birthday balloons around her son’s cross. He would have turned 36.

“Every day, as I go to bed, I tell God, ‘Don’t make me get up the next day,’ because I can’t take it anymore,” Nelson said.

Maze was on his way to work on March 9 and had just pulled out of his family’s apartment complex when he was hit.

Police have been searching for Brandon Hunter to question him about a hit-and-run in the area. No one has been arrested in Maze’s case.

“He would take his life and then leave him like a dog in the street,” Nelson said. “Help! I need help! I need help!”

While working at the downtown Miami arena, Maze would guard events, such as concerts and Heat games. The Heat paid tribute to Maze during a past regular season game.

“It’s hard. It’s difficult to go into work everyday and not see him,” Miami Heat Security Manager Petronia Thompson said.

On Wednesday, Maze’s Heat family honored him with a special jersey to gift to his mother.

“He was a fanatic of jerseys, the Miami Heat jerseys, and when this one came out, we knew for sure he would have wanted it,” Thompson said.

If you have any information on this hit-and-run, call Miami-Dade Crime Stoppers at 305-471-TIPS. Remember, you can always remain anonymous, and you may be eligible for a reward.


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