MIAMI (AP) — Family and friends honored on Monday a UPS driver who was killed in a shootout between Florida police and the robbery suspects who had hijacked his delivery truck.
Loved ones filed by Frank Ordonez's open casket at a Miami funeral home to pay respects to the 27-year-old driver. Some UPS employees showed up in the brown company uniform to express condolences to Ordonez's family. Other UPS drivers pulled their delivery trucks over beside the road to observe a minute of silence for their coworker, according to the union Teamsters Local 769.
On Sunday night at a UPS Customer Center, relatives and friends gathered for a vigil, lit candles and wrote messages on UPS slips they stuck to a car. UPS workers abroad have also joined in to express support— one group from London tweeted a photo showing uniformed workers holding up letters that together spelled #ONE UPS and RIP Frank Ordonez.
More than a dozen officers from four agencies had converged Thursday on the UPS truck at a busy South Florida intersection during rush hour, taking cover behind the vehicles of people stopped at a red light amid bursts of gunfire. The 27-year-old UPS driver and another motorist stopped at the light, Richard Cutshaw, were killed along with the suspects.
The Florida Department of Law Enforcement appealed Monday for anyone who witnessed or has video of the shootout between police and the hijackers of a UPS truck to contact the agency.
The shooting is being investigated by the state agency in part because it involved four police agencies and more than a dozen officers.
The chase began after a jewelry store robbery in Coral Gables, where a woman was struck in the head by a ricocheting bullet. Authorities said 41-year-old cousins Lamar Alexander and Ronnie Jerome Hill fled the store, hijacked Ordonez's UPS truck and led police on a chase on Interstate 75. The truck got off the interstate and drove into Miramar before getting stuck at a busy intersection.
The chase and final shootout were broadcast live on television, including the moment when one of the men tumbled out of the truck, mortally wounded. News coverage included videos taken by motorists.
This story has been corrected to show that the slain motorist's name was Richard Cutshaw, not Richard Cutsaw.
Associated Press writer Freida Frisaro contributed to this report from Miami.