Monroe County Animal Control officer killed by drunk driver honored one year later

A Monroe County Animal Control officer who was killed by an alleged drunk driver a year ago will never be forgotten after the community rallied to name a facility after her.

Darrian Young was killed by a suspected drunk driver in early June of 2020. Her father, Aaron Young, said it was his daughter's lifelong dream that came when she became a Monroe County Animal Control Officer.

"She’d see the mounted division go by and she said someday I want to do that," Young said.

"She trained her own horses, she did everything herself, she didn’t have anybody come in and train them, she did it all herself," her grandmother, Pat said.

Young was on duty that early June day when investigators say a drunk driver ran a light and hit her vehicle. The driver, Michele Dropulich, has been charged with second-degree murder, drunk driving, and reckless driving.

"Our goal is to keep her memory alive. When people pass away a lot of times they fade away and we just don’t want that to happen," Young said.

On Friday, the community gathered to dedicate the "Darrian Young Dog Training and Outdoor Kennel". The money was raised by the community to keep her memory alive and her colleagues choked up at remembering her beautiful and loving spirit.

"Darrian would express her long-term vision of improving the shelter to ensure all pets are comfortable while under the care of the animal control division. Darrian's passing for pets was insurmountable which was evident every day by her happy and pleasant disposition," Monroe County Sheriff Troy Goodnough said.

Young’s father said Darrian had just bought a horse farm and despite this terrible tragedy died happy.

"Darrian loved animals, horses, dogs, cats, everything," Young said.

Dropulich has a pre-trial hearing on June 25th.