KILLEEN, Texas -- Police are investigating the death of Jed Paul "Cole" Naisbitt, a Fort Hood soldier from Ogden.
Killeen police officers responded to a report of gunshots fired around 1 a.m. Saturday and found Naisbitt's body sitting in a car. Killeen is the city at the entrance of the Central Texas Army Post.
"I'm devastated by it," said Jed Naisbitt, his father. "It's never going to be OK with myself or family."
Police have not ruled on the nature of Naisbitt's death as of Monday but suspect it will be homicide, said Killeen Police Capt. Margaret Young.
He was very proud to be a soldier and loved to wear his uniform, his father said. Naisbitt did not have enemies, but he "could've been killed just because he was a soldier," his father said.
Naisbitt was stationed at Fort Hood with the 1st Cavalry Division as a health care specialist. He joined the Army in May 2007 and was deployed to Iraq from December 2008 to November 2009.
The Army recognized him as a decorated soldier, awarding him five medals and two ribbons during his three years of service.
His family and friends knew him by his nickname, Cole, and for his caring heart and daring spirit.
Jeremy Savage, of Ogden, met Naisbitt nine years ago, and from that day on it was one adventure after another with him, Savage said, "whether it's skydiving with strippers in Las Vegas ... or going fishing at three in the morning."
Savage said his friends fondly refer to them as the Crazy Cole Adventures.
They also remember his loving heart, especially for children.
Naisbitt was supposed to come home with an honorable discharge right before Christmas, Savage said, adding that Naisbitt was going to make a young girl's Christmas wish list come true through a toy program, as he had no children of his own.
One of Savage's favorite photos of his friend is of him smiling ear to ear with a big group of children in Iraq. Savage's wife, Amanda, posted it to a Facebook page created to honor Naisbitt's memory.
"Cole really cared about every single one of us and that right there tells you the size of this (man's) heart," his friend Matt Montoya wrote on the page.
This is not the family's first brush with tragic death.
Naisbitt was the nephew of Byron Cortney Naisbitt, who was a torture victim in the 1974 Hi-Fi murders in Ogden, Savage said. Byron Cortney Naisbitt survived the ordeal, but his mother, Carol Naisbitt, and two others did not.
The Associated Press contributed to this article.