A FORMER Huddersfield University student has died during a ski holiday in the French resort of Val d’Isere.
Wolverhampton police officer Richard Williams, 32, died after collapsing on Tuesday afternoon, West Midlands Police confirmed.
Pc Williams, who studied history at Huddersfield University between 1998 and 2001, was described by a force spokesman as a ‘much-loved son, brother and cherished colleague’.
It is believed Pc Williams had been feeling unwell and had decided to stay indoors rather than go out skiing in the hours before he collapsed.
The cause of his death was yesterday still under investigation.
Chief Insp Darren Walsh, of Wolverhampton Police, said: “Rich was a much-loved son, brother and a cherished colleague who will be sadly missed by his family and friends.
“Our thoughts and prayers are with Rich’s family, friends and colleagues at this difficult time.”
Pc Williams joined the force shortly after returning to his native Wolverhampton following graduation.
But the keen sports fan kept strong links with Huddersfield and regularly returned to the town to catch up with his university friends.
A university friend, who did not want to be named, said Pc Williams’ death had hit him like ‘an absolute bolt from the blue’.
He said: “We lived at Storthes Hall for the first year and stayed friends throughout and after university.
“I think Rich found himself in Huddersfield and was very popular with the locals.
“He said how much he loved the countryside and the friendliness of the people and the town centre nightlife.
“He was really energetic and bubbly and he had a wonderful sense of humour. He loved playing practical jokes.
“He kept himself really fit – that’s why it’s an incredible shock.
“He moved away after university but he never lost touch. He often remarked that he’d love to return.
“It’s been an absolute bolt from the blue.”