Miami Gardens - Opa-locka

Last stop for delivery driver: pick up his kids at school. He never made it

Ben Pierre, 38, (right) was killed by a stray bullet while working in his American Fasteners Corp van.
Ben Pierre, 38, (right) was killed by a stray bullet while working in his American Fasteners Corp van.

Ben Pierre was at the tail end of his shift delivering nuts and bolts to stores across South Florida. He had a few more stops left on his run, and then planned to pick up his two kids from school.

Pierre never got there.

Police on Tuesday said he was shot to death in his delivery van by a bullet meant for someone else.

Bered “Ben” Pierre, 38, worked for American Fasteners Corp., and his boss said he was “living the right life.”

At about 1:15 p.m. Monday, Miami Gardens police responded to shots outside a food store at 4195 NW 167th St. Pierre was working in his assigned company van, parked in front of the store, when someone began firing at two people in the parking lot.

One person was hit, and Pierre was struck by a stray bullet while in his van, according to police. He died soon after Miami-Dade Fire Rescue arrived while the other person was treated and released for a non-life threatening gunshot wound.

The surrounding area was shut down Monday as police looked for answers. Police have not released any information about the shooter or the two people targeted.

Pierre had been working for the company for about six months as a driver, said American Fasteners Corp. president Manny Benitez. He had just finished delivering a shipment of hardware to a nearby store and was preparing for his next stop when he was struck by a bullet in the van.

“ He was doing an excellent job from Day One, never had any issues with him,” Benitez said. “He had a great personality, a happy spirited person.”

Pierre, who everyone called ‘Ben,’ was supposed to pick up his sons, Bered, Jr., 5, and Ethan, 3, from school soon after he finished his Monday deliveries, Benitez said.

“The more I think of it, even today, you still feel the senseless loss of life of somebody who’s living the right life, doing the right thing and getting gunned down like an animal,” Benitez said.

Benitez and the American Fasterners company has donated $10,000 to a GoFundMe campaign established to help Pierre’s wife, Shannon, with funeral costs. Since news of Pierre’s death, he has received calls from Pierre’s customers offering condolences to the man he described as cheerful and spirited.

“Even the customers, even though it was just six months, they knew he was a very patient, kind individual, and everyone loved him,” Benitez said.

Anyone with information is asked to call Miami-Dade Crime Stoppers at 305-471-TIPS (8477).