Lazaro Mendez was born in 1971, sadly he had a rare muscular disorder that caused his baby legs to be deformed. The Doctor told the dismal diagnosis to the parents; the child would likely never walk again, he would lie in bed and have to fed and changed every day for the rest of his life. Benita, his mother, simply refused to believe this, she mustered all her love and faith and she made a promise to “San Lazaro” right there, that if her son walked, she would wear only burlap clothes for a year.
From the time Lazaro was just 3 months old to 12 years, he endured a total of 17 surgeries, the odds were always against him and the surgeries were painful but Benita and little Lazarito battled through all the hardships. Slowly he started to improve, by age 3 Lazaro stood for the first time and by age 7 he took his first steps all on his own, his mother bursted in tears and never forgot her “promesa”. She sewed her own burlap outfits and wore them for a year. Even after the surgeries he had to do a lot of therapy and walk with a cane and leg braces. He spent a lot of his childhood inside and even when he went to school, kids would make fun of his leg braces.
Music became his escape, after his last surgery he asked his parents for a turntable DJ set for Christmas, with a lot of sacrifice his parents got it for him. As other kids played outside, his legs were still healing so he spent his time perfecting his DJ skills in his room. When his parents divorced, the family’s financial situation was rough; his mom was working grueling 12 hours shifts six days a week as a housekeeper.
Although just a boy, he was desperate to help, to be a man. He managed to get a job at radio station HOT105 and eventually got his first gig as a DJ, he was just 14 years old. He was given a shot to prove himself at the famous Club Strawberries in east Hialeah. He was so nervous that the manager doubted if he could even go on stage but he closed his eyes and thought of his mother, of her unwillingness to give up on him, of her love. He opened his eyes and took the first step into becoming a Miami legend, the king of Miami Bass, DJ Laz. 💛💜💛