A Brooklyn DJ with roots in the Orlando cyclist community will be honored with a memorial ride later this month after being killed in a hit-and-run accident in New York City.
Zack Fortune, a 2004 Edgewater High School graduate, died Wednesday following an accident in Brooklyn on Tuesday afternoon. According to New York City Police, Fortune, 27, was struck by the door of a parked car and then fell into oncoming traffic. He was then hit by another vehicle.
The motorist of the parked car fled. Fortune later died from his injuries at Bellevue Hospital. An investigation is ongoing, an NYPD spokesperson told the Orlando Sentinel.
Orlando Critical Mass, a monthly group-ride event, will hold a memorial ride in Fortune's honor on June 27. Before moving to Brooklyn in 2011, Fortune was an early proponent of the urban bike culture and Critical Mass.
“He definitely made a huge impact,” said longtime friend and Orlando Critical Mass organizer Nicholas Mandino.
The Facebook post publicizing the memorial ride says: “Another friend and fellow cyclist has been lost. Let’s get together, ride some bikes, share some stories, and honor the life of Zack Fortune...You will be missed but never forgotten!”
The ride dedicated to Fortune will meet at Loch Haven Park and begin at 5:25 p.m.
Tall and lanky with long dreadlocks and tattoos, Fortune had a passion for bikes, which included starting a bike polo group in Orlando. And the “big-hearted kid” also had a love for all things pirates, Mandino said.
“Ever since we were kids, he had a thing about pirates,” Mandino said. “If it was pirate-related, he would want it.”
In New York, Fortune - whose stage name was Furoche - worked as a DJ, a producer, a screen printer, an artist and a musician. Fortune had been scheduled to perform in Denver later this month with Gangsta Boo of Three 6 Mafia.
Though he left Orlando for New York, Fortune returned to Florida every few months, usually unannounced, Mandino said. Fortune often toured with bands and if time allowed, he would stop in Orlando for a Critical Mass ride or to just hang out.
“He had a lust for life that is unparalleled to anyone I’ve ever met in my life,” Mandino said.
Funeral services for Fortune were held Friday in New York. A crowdsourcing fund to cover the funeral expenses raised more than $11,000 in less than a week.
“I wish you could truly know how many people you have touched and inspired,” wrote someone named Jose who left a $75 donation to the fund.
A memorial service in Orlando is being planned, Mandino said.
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