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AURORA, Ill. — An Aurora Police Department officer died Tuesday due to complications from COVID-19.

Officer Brian Shields was a 16-year veteran of the department. He was 51.

“Our condolences and prayers go out to Brian’s family and to all those he served with during his more than 16 years as an officer with the Aurora Police Department,” Aurora Chief of Police Keith Cross said. “Our police department family will do everything possible to provide support and comfort to Brian’s family. Brian’s memory will live on forever at APD.”

Shields’ vaccination status is unknown at this time.

There is a vaccine mandate in Aurora for city workers, but weekly testing is also an option. According to the National Law Enforcement Memorial and Museum, an organization that tracks officers deaths, Covid was once again the leading cause of death for officers in 2021 — with 301 officers dying from the virus.

The police department said Shields’ family is asking for privacy.