But the fun ended when Andrew was struck down crossing the street by an illegal alien driving a stolen van. The driver, Hugo Rodriguez Colindrez, tried to escape the crime scene but was forced off the road by another motorist who witnessed the incident.
Colindrez reportedly worked in construction on a condo project on Panama City Beach. Police believe he was driving drunk, but the blood tests are not yet available.
Andrew was only 21, but had made a big impression on those who knew him.
Co-workers remembered him as energetic, fun-loving and a good friend.
"He's the type of person who would do anything for anyone without being asked," said Dave Hinman, who manages an O'Fallon QuikTrip and owns a sporting goods store where Stear worked.
Hinman said Stear's caring personality extended outside the workplace too. He volunteered at No Hunger Holiday, an annual program to provide food to needy residents at Thanksgiving. [Student on vacation killed in hit-and-run, St. Louis Post Dispatch 3/30/07]
One tiny bit of hope to bring this unnecessary road carnage to an end is the Scott Gardner Act, which has been reintroduced as HR 1355. The bill would require rapid deportation of any illegal immigrant convicted of drunk driving.