Kingsbridge Heights resident Adam Lutz has passed away. He was 33 years old.
The John F. Kennedy High School graduate was killed by a car near the Kingsbridge Heights home he shared with his 63-year-old mother, Mariana Lutz on June 13, 2013.
Mr. Lutz was employed as an arts specialist at Kingsbridge Heights Community Center, where he worked on arts and crafts projects with handicapped children. At Mr. Lutz’s funeral, Ms. Lutz said parents of several autistic children involved in KHCC’s programming thanked her for her son’s work.
“They said my son was their children’s voice,” she said.
Hannah Gabris, director of the special needs program at KHCC, described Mr. Lutz as a talented artist who was down to earth, caring, positive and respectful.
“He had a huge heart for the kids, and he was the most patient person that I’ve ever seen,” she said. “He was the perfect match to work with a very challenging population.”
Born in the Kingsbridge Heights area, Mr. Lutz attended M.S. 143, which closed in June 2007. He began his work at KHCC after graduating from Kennedy.
Along with his work as an arts specialist, he was studying Japanese at Lehman College, before taking a leave of absence to care for Ms. Lutz after her heart valve replacement surgery.
Ms. Lutz said her son loved to collect comic books. They traveled up the hill each week to buy comics at Magnum Comics and Cards on Riverdale Avenue – X-Men comics were a particular favorite of his. After Mr. Lutz’ death, the store displayed his picture in its front window as a memorial to a longtime customer.
Magnum Comics manager Tony Caamano, 51, said Mr. Lutz had visited the store since elementary school.
“He really liked comics and he really liked helping people,” said Mr. Caamano, who used to talk with Mr. Lutz about movies, people and politics each weekend. “He would help anybody, he’d talk to anybody.”
“He was always smiling and he always seemed happy,” he said.
Mr. Lutz is survived by friends from Riverdale, his mother, and a brother.
“He was very kind, a very nice young man. Polite, good natured,” said Ms. Lutz. “I probably wouldn’t be alive if he didn’t stay to help me.”