Funeral held for BSO deputy fatally killed in Deerfield Beach crash

FORT LAUDERDALE, FLA. (WSVN) - Loved ones gathered for a funeral to honor a Broward Sheriff’s Office deputy killed in a Deerfield Beach crash.

Law enforcement officials started a procession at 8 a.m. in West Palm Beach for BSO Deputy Benjamin Nimtz on Thursday morning.

Dozens of police motorcycles continued to head south on the Florida Turnpike to arrive at Fred Hunter’s Funeral Home, located in the area of North 64th Avenue and Taft Street.

Family, friends and law enforcement officials attended the funeral to pay respects to the 30-year-old U.S. Army veteran.

His wife Emily Nimtz and two children stood near the casket and put flowers on top of it.

“On that morning, greater hands were at play, and Emily, our hearts are broken,” said BSO Captain Rodney Brimlow.

Nimtz’s casket was put at the center of Calvary Chapel, located along Northwest 21st Avenue and West Cypress Creek Road, in Fort Lauderdale as the funeral started.

“If you could ever say one thing about Benji, he loved his family,” said Michael Kozma, Nimtz’s friend. “He was never too macho to play the stay-at-home dad. He loved Tommy, Eliza and Emily more than anything in this world.”

“We little knew that morning that God would call your name,” BSO Chaplain Nathaniel Knowles said at the podium. “In life, we love you dearly. In death, we do the same. It broke our hearts to lose you, but you did not go alone. Part of us went with you the day God called you home. You left us beautiful memories. Your love is still our guide, and though we cannot see you, you’re always by our side.”

Songs and saluting deputies surrounded Nimtz’s casket draped with an American flag.

“So today, for the rest of our lives, we honor you, Benji, for giving your all to those around you, to those that you loved, to those lucky enough to have known you,” said Kozma.

BSO conducted Nimtz’s final radio call at the end of the service: “No contact for uniform 18634. Deputy Benjamin Nimtz, uniform 18634, is 10-7.”

The radio signal code 10-7 means Nimtz is out of service.

He was responding to a domestic dispute call when his cruiser collided with a pickup truck at around 3 a.m. on July 21.

Nimtz was transported to Broward Health North in Pompano Beach, where he succumbed to his injuries.

 

“Benji and I always rode together to every call. That night was no different. I was right behind him, always by his side,” said BSO Deputy Roberto Ramon. “I know the reason why God put Benji in mine. Not only will I learn to be a better deputy because of him, but a better husband, a better father and just an overall man.”

Nimtz was transported to Broward Health North in Pompano Beach, where he succumbed to his injuries.

“My heart broke that Sunday morning, and it’s kept breaking every day since,” said Justin Ortez, Nimtz’s brother-in-law. “It broke for my sister losing her husband. It broke for their kids, who have to grow up without their father.”

He was hired by BSO on March 19, 2018.

Nimtz was three shifts away from moving to Indiana with his wife and two children where he’d take on a new job.

“A family’s chain has been broken and nothing seems the same,” Knowles said, “but as God calls us one by by, the chain will link again.”

“Benji, I love you, and I’ll see you again,” added Jojie Fujikawa, Nimtz’s friend.

A U.S. honor flag was carried on a United Airlines flight from Chicago to Fort Lauderdale on Wednesday for his service.

The fatal crash is still being investigated. Detectives are waiting for a toxicology report. Charges may soon follow.

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