Brian O’Connor/Connecticut House Democrats via AP
- A Connecticut lawmaker died hours after being sworn in as state representative.
- He was involved in a traffic collision that left one other person dead.
- Lawmakers mourned state Rep. Quentin “Q” Williams following the announcement of his death.
A Connecticut lawmaker died after being involved in a late-night traffic collision following the inaugural ball on Wednesday night, according to The New York Times.
The collision occurred around 12:45 a.m. local time just outside of Middletown, Connecticut, on Route 9 in a town called Cromwell. One other individual, whose identity is currently unknown, died.
The crash was a result of a vehicle going in the wrong direction on the highway. It’s unclear in which direction the state lawmaker’s vehicle was going, but the southbound vehicle had been “fully engulfed in flames,” police told The New York Times.
The 39-year-old lawmaker, state Rep. Quentin “Q” Williams of Middletown in the 100th District, a Democrat serving in the Connecticut General Assembly, had been sworn in on Wednesday. He was first elected in 2019 and was the first Black state representative to serve Middletown, according to his bio on the Connecticut House Democrats website.
—Jim Himes 🇺🇸🇺🇦 (@jahimes) January 5, 2023
According to his biography, he graduated from Bryant University with a Bachelor’s in Business Administration, from Villanova University with a Master’s in Public Administration, and received a Diversity and Inclusion Certificate from Cornell University. Williams was a member of the Alpha Phi Alpha Fraternity Inc. Beta Sigma Lambda Chapter, Hartford.
Williams had been involved in Middletown Racial Justice Coalition, Cross Street Zion A.M.E.Church, and Middletown Young Democrats, his bio added.
Lawmakers mourned Williams and spoke of his positive energy in statements following the announcement of his death.
“Rep. Williams truly embodied the phrase larger than life. His laugh, smile, and presence were felt in every space shared with him. His passing is a true loss for our community. A light has been dimmed today. His dedication to fighting for equity, education, worker’s rights, and justice in all its forms is irreplaceable, and while we are heartbroken, the community he loved so much—and where Q was loved so much in return—will continue the fight,” the Mayor of Middletown Benjamin Florsheim said in a post on Facebook.
“This is devastating news, and I am incredibly saddened by this tragedy,” Gov. Ned Lamont said in a statement according to NBC Connecticut. “Quentin had an infectiously optimistic personality, and he absolutely loved having the opportunity to represent his lifelong home of Middletown at the State Capitol. Public service was his passion, and he was always advocating on behalf of the people of his hometown. He was a genuine person with a genuine soul, and he will be missed. My prayers are with his family, including his wife Carrissa and his mother Queen, as well as his friends and colleagues in the General Assembly.”
Williams is survived by his wife, Carrissa.
The Connecticut State Police and Williams’ office did not immediately respond to Insider’s request for comment.