Murdered Bicyclist Danny Perez Was a Special Olympics Athlete

Danny Perez, the man who was mysteriously shot and killed while riding his bicycle Friday night, was also a Special Olympic athlete who was named Miami-Dade County's Inspirational Athlete of the Year in 2008.

Perez was riding west on NW 79th Street between NW 17th and NW 22nd after getting off a bus when he was shot Friday night at about 11:30. Several passerbys tried to offer assistance, but police say he died on the scene.

Now his family is asking for answers.

"I hope that someone can help us find the criminal. It was my son, but tomorrow it could be your son," his mother said at a press conference.

Perez, 36-years-old, was born developmentally disabled but competed in several sports in the Special Olympics, including basketball, power lifting, soccer, and cycling and received recognition from both the organization and the city of Hialeah. Perez also served as the Hialeah-Miami Lakes High School football equipment manager.

"He was the definition of pride and spirit for Hialeah and Miami Lakes and for me personally. I've been coaching there for seven years, and Danny never left my side," Hialeah-Miami Lakes football coach Pedro Basnueva told WSVN.

Now, there are plans to honor Perez on the floor of the state legislature.

As of yet police have no leads or details about the gunman. Anyone with information is asked to call CrimeStoppers at 305-471-TIPS (8477).

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