MONROE, La. - Tragedy striking the Monroe Police Department twice in less than six months.
This time--the death of 26-year-old officer Ayrian Williams. She died in the line of duty Monday night while trying to assist another officer on a call.
"She was traveling southbound on S. 8th Street and while in route she made an attempt to avoid a hazard in the roadway and her vehicle left the road and impacted a large tree," said MPD Chief Eugene Ellis.
Williams graduated from Louisiana State University with a degree in criminal justice. Before joining the Monroe Police Department she worked for over a year with the Southern University Police Department.
She took the job with MPD to further her career in law enforcement.
But, still kept in touch with her baton rouge police family.
"We saw her as recent as last week on our campus so it just doesn't seem real," Southern University Police Officer Brian Philson.
For him, the news even more unbelievable. The two had just made plans to hang out this week.
"I just spoke to her yesterday afternoon.. I wrote her via snapchat. She told me she was off on Wednesday and she looked forward to seeing me," said Philson.
Here in Monroe the police department suffering as well.
Losing its second officer in a single car crash this year.
"Tragedy struck us in January when we lost Officer [Chris] Beaudion," said Mayor Jamie Mayo.
"Last week was national police week where we honor fallen officers at that we had no idea we as the Monroe Police Department would be adding another name to that list," said Ellis.
Chief Ellis reminding everyone that Williams was a proud Monroe officer.
"She could have went anywhere, but she came to the Monroe Police Department to be a Monroe police officer. She chose the city of Monroe as her new home and community. And for that we thank her," said Ellis.
Sending prayers to her loved ones as well as encouraging her brothers and sister in blue to be strong.
"She would want them to continue to fight to reduce crime and to continue to protect and serve the community that she served in the same manner," said MPD Executive Officer Reggie Brown.
"Just from working with her we built a friendship that will carry on forever," said Philson.
Grief counseling is being offered to everyone in the department.
The city has set up a memorial fund for Williams at Iberia Bank.