Dear Monty:

On behalf of the city of New Orleans, I send you our sincerest condolences during this most difficult time.

We know how much your wife Ingrid meant to you.

You showed us every single time you stepped onto the Smoothie King Center floor.

For five seasons, we watched you walk onto the court before every game, look up into Section 112 and wave to her and your five children.

And when the game ended, you’d walk them to the car, right before or right after you met with the media for postgame interviews.

We saw her accompany you when you and your family would visit shelters and feed the homeless in New Orleans.

They say behind every good man is a good woman, and Ingrid Williams is a testament to that.

I never met her, but I got a pretty good idea of who she was on Wednesday as the news spread about her tragic death in an automobile crash in Oklahoma City.

“Ingrid was a beloved wife to Monty and dedicated mother to their five beautiful children,” Pelicans General Manager Dell Demps said. “My wife and I are heart broken and our thoughts and prayers are with Monty and his children during this difficult time.”

Similar sentiments poured in from all across the NBA on social media.

Players tweeted.

“She was like a second mother to me when I got to NOLA,” tweeted Anthony Davis.

And former players tweeted.

”Ingrid was a great mother, wife, and person,” said ex-Pelicans guard Austin Rivers, now with the Clippers.

“Monty Williams and his wife were the standard of what I wanted my family to be like,” said former New Orleans guard Jarret Jack, now with the Brooklyn Nets.

But perhaps the most accurate description came from Dante Corbin, wife of former NBA player and coach Tyrone Corbin.

“A godly woman who loved the Lord, her husband and their five beautiful children,” Corbin said.

Family and faith meant everything to Ingird. So much so that she even named one of her five children after it. Faith is the second of the five children, along with Lael, Janna, Elijah and Micah.

Faith and family mean everything to Monty, too.

He and Ingrid wrote a book in 2010 entitled “Look Again 52,” a scripture-filled devotional book.

Knowing Williams, he will lean on his faith during this most difficult time, just like he did the last time I ever spoke with him.

Fellow sportswriter Ted Lewis and I were standing on the porch of Williams’ home in Metairie home that day in May. He had just been fired after five seasons as the Pelicans head coach. He didn’t want to talk about his dismissal.

But he made sure that we knew he was going to be just fine. He talked about his faith that day, quoting a scripture and emphasizing how God had his back and he’d bounce back.

He did just that, landing an assistant coaching job with Oklahoma City.

Here’s hoping Monty bounces back again.

We’re rooting for you.


The City of New Orleans

P.S. You’ve earned your wings Ingrid. Take flight. Rest in Peace