A town is in mourning after the body of a black man was found burning in a ditch in rural Iowa.
According to CNN, the Iowa Division of Criminal Investigation is treating the death as a homicide.
Janalee Boldt, Mr Williams' ex-wife and the mother of his children, told local broadcaster KCCI that her ex-husband was "a family person" and that "his kids were always important".
Ms Boldt and Mr Williams had five children together. She said she was trying to stay strong for her children.
"My daughter will not let me outside in the dark by myself because she's afraid of losing another parent," Ms Boldt said.
The family decided to make purple shirts — purple was Mr Williams' favorite colour — with the phrase "Justice For Michael" on them to commemorate their father.
On Monday, Grinnell College cancelled its classes in response to the death of one of its neighbors.
The college said its staff and students were given the day off to "recommit ourselves to equity and inclusion and to recognise the violent loss of one of our community".
The college tied the incident into the broader societal reckoning regarding violence toward black people in the wake of George Floyd's death, and claimed that "national context has become local experience."
"This stark and brutal murder in the national context of racial injustice has struck intense fear for safety of our Black Indigenous and People of Color (BIPOC) colleagues, friends and families," Grinnell College President Anne Harris wrote in a statement.
"We live in a predominantly white community and work in a predominantly white college. The murder of Mr. Williams is an incident that is rare in the experience of most Iowans. But for many people of color, this incident is the most recent in an accumulated history of prejudice, mistreatment, and murder," the statement said.
Friends of Mr Williams' family began a GoFundMe campaign to help pay for any expenses the family will incur during the investigation. The fundraiser's initial goal of $10,000 was met in less than a day, and has since been increased to $35,000.