Monty Williams preaches forgiveness in eulogy for wife

On Thursday evening, Monty Williams had the unenviable task of delivering a eulogy for his wife Ingrid, who was tragically killed in an automobile collision last week.

Even in the face of such pain, Williams managed to offer a lesson in strength, faith and forgiveness. The veteran NBA coach was at his most eloquent; here are a couple snippets from the end of his speech:

I’m going to close with this, and I think it’s the most important thing that we need to understand. Everybody’s praying for me and my family, which is right. But let us not forget that there were two people in this situation. And that family needs prayer as well. And we have no ill will toward that family. In my house, we have a sign that says, ‘As for me and my house, we will serve the Lord.’ We cannot serve the Lord if we don’t have a heart of forgiveness. That family didn’t wake up wanting to hurt my wife. Life is hard. It is very hard. And that was tough. But we hold no ill will toward the Donaldson family. And we, as a group, brothers united in unity, should be praying for that family, because they grieve as well. So let’s not lose sight of what’s important.

And by all means, watch the whole thing by clicking on the Facebook post below.

Ingrid Williams, 44, was in her SUV in downtown Oklahoma City when she was struck by an oncoming driver who crossed the center line while traveling at a high rate of speed, according to a collision report cited by News 9 in Oklahoma City. The driver of that vehicle, Susannah Donaldson, was pronounced dead at the scene of the collision. 

Monty Williams, who coached the Pelicans for five seasons and is in his first season as an assistant on the Thunder, has shown his formidable character and strength in the face of tragedy before. He reportedly was one of the first people at Ryan Anderson’s side when the Pelicans forward’s girlfriend committed suicide. According to Sports Illustrated’s Chris Ballard, Williams fell to his knees to embrace Anderson, "the two men rocking back and forth."

Several members of the NBA family, including members of the Spurs, Clippers and Pelicans, reportedly were in attendance for Ingrid Williams’ funeral. And LeBron James spoke for many players when he praised the power of Monty Williams’ words.