Thanks to host Tom Givens, I recently spent several rapt hours listening to Ed Mireles, the hero of the notorious FBI shootout in Miami, tell us his perspectives and learning points from that terrible day in April of 1986.

It began as a rolling stakeout for a pair of as yet unidentified, heavily-armed robbers who the agents knew had already committed murder.  It ended in five minutes of gunfire with what Ed estimates as 150 rounds exchanged.  At the climax, Ed was severely wounded, hemorrhaging from a head wound that had cut a temporal artery, and his shattered left arm hanging useless from a .223 rifle hit.  Seeing four brother agents down – two dead, two gravely wounded – and the killers now in an FBI car about to back over two or three of those agents and escape, Mireles dropped the Remington 870 12-gauge he had emptied at the murderers one-handed and staggered toward them, carefully aiming and firing his service revolver as he went.

The gunfight that led to sweeping changes and advances in high-tech police armament and ammunition ended when Ed scored five K-zone hits out of six .38 Special rounds he fired one-handed from his Smith & Wesson 686.

Ed’s wife Elizabeth, also an agent in the FBI’s Miami office at the time, was at the seminar. She wrote one of the most compelling chapters in Ed’s recent book on the gunfight.  She talks about what it was like finding that the man she loved had just gone through that and had been almost killed.  Law dog or armed citizen, we have to remember that one of the things we’re fighting for is coming home to the people we love who count on us to be there.

Ed’s book is titled “FBI Miami Firefight” and is available from

My reviews of Ed’s book can be found at American Handgunner magazine, here.

And here.

His story is a compelling and inspiring one that should be studied, in my opinion, not just by any law enforcement officer but any law-abiding armed citizen who keeps or carries a gun for self-defense.  Ed is autographing the books upon request, and turning them around so fast I’m sure you’ll get your gift book in time for Christmas if you order it now.  Life-saving inspiration, for less than the price of a box of pistol ammo.


Ed Mireles demonstrates the stance from which he fired the final shots of the historic gunfight.

Mireles shows where a .223 round hit him in the arm early in the firefight.

It was a privilege to introduce some of the MAG staff to the legendary hero lawman and his wife. From left: Gail Pepin, Bob Zenoni, Liz Mireles, Ed Mireles, Mas, David Maglio, Steve Denney.


  1. Howdy Folks,
    I read Ed’s book, enjoyed it.. Hard to put down….
    I wrote to Ed and thanked him for everything… He
    wrote back, sounded like a swell guy…
    Thanks again, Ed…. You’re my hero…


  2. This incident and the “Newhall massacre” are probably the two most compelling yet “teachable” incidents in U.S. Law Enforcement in the last quarter of the 20th Century. Those officers shed their blood on the alter of officer survival knowledge and should always be remembered with honor and respect. I referred to them often in my LE instructor days.

  3. Mas, you hit the target with your discussion of Ed’s seminar… it was really informative and enjoyable… He was very frank and certainly didn’t pull any punches as to what he saw and what led up to the events…

    If anyone gets the opportunity to go to this seminar I would recommend it highly.

  4. What a man! Just outstanding courage, strength, and determination got him thru that ordeal. A REAL hero and a Super Stud, right?

  5. Mas, I have read quite a number of articles about the shoot-out, enough to realize what an enviable experience it must have been to meet Ed personally and discuss the incident that affected so many changes. I didn’t know about his book but I will be adding it to my library post haste. Thanks for another great post.

  6. Thanks Mas, I wrote to Ed and let him know just how much I appreciated his teaching. You have taught me a lot too, as you know.

  7. I got a copy a couple of months ago when you wrote about Ed and his book, enjoyed it, still have it and will read it again. Probably will loan it out to a few select friends after then.

  8. I bought & read Ed’s book after reading what Mas wrote about it in American Handgunner magazine & I can tell you that it is by far the best book ever written about the FBI Miami Firefight. Even though I have already read just about everything ever written about this incident, I learned a lot more from this book, including numerous details that only Ed could provide from his eyewitness experiences & access to the FBI archive. The book was co-written by Ed’s wife, Liz, & is so well written that I doubt that it could ever be improved upon. It is an easy read & is never dull or dry. In fact, I couldn’t put it down. It is also well illustrated with several diagrams & crime scene photographs to help the reader to understand exactly what happened. Of particular interest to me, were the chapters discussing Ed’s recovery from his wounds, the psychological mindset & effects of a shootout, & the lessons learned from this incident.

    I believe that you can only buy this book from Ed’s website (not on Amazon) & it is well worth the price. I got a personally autographed copy from him & it arrived only three days after I ordered it. I’m so impressed by it that I’m buying several more copies to give to family members & friends for Christmas. It’s not only the best book on the Miami firefight that has ever been written, it’s also the most educational book about all aspects of gun fighting that I know of. It is absolutely mandatory reading for anyone interested in these subjects. You owe it to yourself to read it & you will not be disappointed.

  9. Thank you for sharing this Mas. Unfortunately I needed to cancel plans to attend this seminar, but I just ordered the book and am looking forward to it. Reading through Mr Mireles website shows he has certainly been busy since this tragic incident; our appreciation to both him and his wife.

    Our best to you and yours.
    John formerly of Sacramento, now happily retired in TX.

  10. Got a note from Ed that the books are slightly behind on orders but that is no problem at all. I eagerly await the arrival of the book and am looking forward to reading it. Merry Christmas to you and the significant other Mas, and also to Ed and his wife. May you all have many more!

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