‘Tragic and senseless:’ Family and friends mourn fallen DPW worker at City Hall vigil

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MILWAUKEE -- A community came together Friday evening, Feb. 15 to remember a Department of Public Works employee killed on the job earlier this month. Loved ones remember 54-year-old Bryan Rodriguez as a man who was devoted to his family and friends -- as the search for a hit-and-run driver who killed him continues.

Inside Milwaukee's City Hall, a moment of reflection -- remembering Rodriguez. The DPW employee was killed near 17th and Vine after a hit-and-run driver slammed into him as he filled potholes.

Crash involving Milwaukee DPW truck, car near 17th and Vine

Loved ones say Rodriguez was a hard worker, but most importantly, a loving husband and father.

"He was just a funny guy," said Frank, a family spokesman. "He never liked to see people down."

Bryan Rodriguez

Rodriguez's loss was felt not just by those who knew him, but by everyone in his city family.

"He was truly somebody that was respected, and somebody that was loved," said Jeff Polenske, Milwaukee Director of Public Works. "Bryan will be dearly missed by all of us in DPW."

Vigil held at City Hall for DPW employee Bryan Rodriguez

"I'm proud that he worked for our city," said Milwaukee Mayor Tom Barrett. "I'm proud that he made the decision to work for the City of Milwaukee."

As this group remembers his life, they now look for justice -- asking for the hit-and-run driver to come forward.

Memorial for DPW worker Bryan Rodriguez, who was struck and killed near 17th and Vine in Milwaukee

Vigil held at City Hall for DPW employee Bryan Rodriguez

"Turn yourself in. Stop running. Do what's right," said Frank.

A life taken suddenly, leaving behind unimaginable pain as a family leans on each other to get through it.

"It's tragic, and it's senseless," said Frank.

A public visitation will be held on Saturday, Feb. 16 from 9 a.m. to noon at Serb Hall, followed by a service and procession.

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