Frank Ordonez, a father of two young girls, was the UPS driver who was taken hostage by two armed robbers and later killed during a shootout with police in Miramar, friends and family members have confirmed.
Ordonez had worked with UPS for five years, his brother told Miami Herald news partner CBS4.
Thursday was his first day on the job as a driver, CBS4 reported.
“We are deeply saddened to learn a UPS service provider was a victim of this senseless act of violence. We extend our condolences to the family and friends of our employee and the other innocent victims involved in the incident,” UPS said in a statement. “We appreciate law enforcement’s service and will cooperate with the authorities as they continue the investigation.”
Police say the two suspects hijacked the UPS truck after a robbery at a Coral Gables jewelry store Thursday afternoon. They then led police on a harrowing cross-county chase up Interstate-75 that ended Thursday night in a dramatic and deadly shootout on a busy street in Miramar.
The chase from Coral Gables to Miramar and the final firefight were broadcast live by TV news helicopters.
The two robbers and a bystander who was inside an idle car at the scene also died in the crossfire, the FBI confirmed Thursday night.
True Homestead, a local Facebook group, shared condolences online shortly after the shooting.
“No one goes to work thinking they won’t return,” True Homestead, a local Facebook group wrote shortly after the shoot out. “It breaks our hearts his [Ordonez’s] loved ones watched it unfold on live TV, very sad. Sending love and prayers to your family.”
Ordonez’s brother Roy has created a GoFundMe page to help raise funds for a lawyer, funeral costs and to support his three and five-year-old daughters.
“He didn’t deserve to die the way he did, he was just going to work to provide for his two little girls, which he loved so much, which are now left without a father,” his brother wrote on the page.
The page has raised more than $1,000 as of 8:30 a.m. Friday.
Those interested in donating to the GoFundMe page can click here.