Albert Rider was going to work for the first time since his honeymoon when his wife told him their house had been broken into Monday morning.
Rider, 53, turned his work van around and returned to his Cleveland County home to find it had been burglarized, said Mike Harvey, his boss and owner of Carmichaels Electric.
A few hours later, Rider was found shot inside the van in Pottawatomie County and was flown to a hospital, where he died.
Harvey said Rider was a hard worker who he always trusted with important projects.
“It will take two to replace him,” he said.
Harvey said Rider had been an employee for seven years and a friend for 15 years.
Pottawatomie County deputies arrested Michael Preston Choate, 24, and James Isaac South, 35, Monday night in connection with Rider's killing. A third suspect, Bradley Austin Keith, was arrested by U.S. marshals Tuesday in Oklahoma City, said Pottawatomie County Sheriff Mike Booth.
Pottawatomie County deputies received a call before noon Monday that a van crashed through a gate on New Hope Road near Fishmarket Road. They found Rider wounded in the van, Booth said.
Before he crashed, Rider stopped at a Country Boy store along State Highway 9 near Lake Thunderbird and asked the employees if anyone had tried to buy anything with large amounts of change, Booth said.
“From there, we think that's when he (Rider) entered Pottawatomie County and we believe there was a confrontation with one or more of the suspects where he (Rider) was shot,” Booth said.
Oklahoma State Bureau of Investigation agents found fingerprints and blood evidence, including a large amount of blood on the roof of the van, Booth said.
Rider suffered injuries to his head and had one gunshot wound in his hand and another one in his chest, authorities said.
Cleveland County deputies recovered all of the items stolen from Rider's home, except for two guns, Booth said.