NEW YORK CITY — A Brooklyn dad who worked in a shelter for domestic violence victims died Tuesday night after he lost control of his Honda CBR motorcycle and slammed into a guardrail on the Van Wyck Expressway near JFK Airport, cops said.
Rodolfo "Rolo" Wellington, 32, an aspiring reggaeton artist, had spent a night out watching the Knicks playoff game with friends in Long Island when he plowed into the guardrail near the Nassau Expressway just before 11:40 p.m., relatives and cops said.
The cause of the crash was not immediately clear.
Wellington, of Prospect-Lefferts Gardens, was taken to Jamaica Hospital, where he was pronounced dead, police said.
"He was so excited about getting this bike," said Chantell Scott, 32, Wellington's sister. "He just got it a month ago. I told him, 'Just be safe.' He told me, 'No, sis, don't worry. I'm taking my time. I'm not speeding.'"
No other motorists appeared to have been injured in the accident, cops said.
Wellington's mother, Yvonne Scott, 53, said he bought himself the bike as a 32nd birthday present.
"When he said he was going to buy a motorcycle I begged him not to," Yvonne Scott said.
She last saw her son Thursday when he stopped by to show her his new motorcycle clothing, including a leather jacket.
"He said, 'Mom I want you to see how your son looks with his gear,'" she said, adding they embraced before he left. "He hugged me and he kissed me."
Yvonne Scott said she has "not been good at all" since hearing the news.
"I haven't ate since yesterday," she said. "He was my baby."
Wellington's childhood friend Ernest Freeman said he was beloved in the community.
"He'll never be forgotten. He was always helping," said Freeman, 30. "[He was] very loveable. We said a prayer for his family."
Wellington, who grew up in Panama and moved to New York with his family in 1989, worked at Safe Horizons in Manhattan, where he specialized in assisting domestic violence victims.
In his spare time, he wrote music, and dreamed of becoming a reggaeton artist, Scott said.
But his true passion, she said, was his 2-year-old daughter, Nazabeth.
"That was his world. He loved his daughter dearly," Scott said. "She'd see her dad and she wouldn't want to talk or look at anybody else.
"When her daddy was around, it was all about her dad."