Coworkers mourn after beloved Kendall restaurant cook killed in hit-and-run

His friends and coworkers have set up a Facebook fundraiser since his family lives in Mexico

Coworkers seek answers after beloved cook is fatally struck in SW Miami-Dade
Coworkers seek answers after beloved cook is fatally struck in SW Miami-Dade

SOUTHWEST MIAMI-DADE, Fla. – A Kendall community is mourning after a beloved restaurant cook was killed in a hit-and-run.

“After 16 years that he’s been away from his country — not seeing his mother — I think that’s what he deserves. At least that,” says General Manager of Don Burrito in Kendall, Ivonne Aguilar.

Aguilar says 34-year-old Jose Piedra Perez, known as “Chiquito,” was known around the kitchen for being more than a coworker or a friend — he was family.

“He was a very outgoing person,” she says. “Very nice. You would ask him for anything, and he would do it for you... anything”

Chiquito was a cook there who loved his job. Then, tragedy struck him.

According to police, at 1:40 a.m. on Friday, May 14, a newer model Mercedes-Benz was traveling westbound on Southwest 72nd Street when the vehicle struck Chiquito while on his bicycle along on 109th Avenue and fled the scene in an unknown direction.

He was pronounced deceased on the scene.

“He did not deserve this at all,” says Aguilar in pain. “Not even an animal deserves what happened to him.”

A donation jar now sits inside the restaurant. The restaurant has also set up a Facebook fundraiser.

Aguilar says Chiquito’s parents — his sister and brother — still live in Mexico, and she’s hoping to raise enough money to send their son — their brother — his body back home.

“So the family can be together at least for his final goodbye,” she says. “A sad, final goodbye. That’s the least we can do.”

To donate to their Facebook fundraiser, click here.

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