OAKWOOD, Ill. (WCCU) -- The Village of Oakwood is mourning the recent loss of a local soldier.
Specialist Zachary Phillip Partin was just 24-years-old.
He was found unresponsive in his military base in Fort Hood, Texas one week ago.
Now the Army is investigating his death, while the Village of Oakwood is honoring his life.
He was an Oakwood High School student.
Partin enlisted November 2012 as a radio operator. He was found unresponsive in his barracks in Fort Hood, Texas January 12, 2017.
"A young man who could have been a positive contribution to the community, wherever he would have settled in,” Oakwood High School Principal Tim Lee said. “And to not have that, it's too bad."
Lee remembers Partin not only as his student, but as a cross country athlete as well.
"Unique character,” he said. “Kind of went to the beat of his own drum. One day we caught him climbing a tree during cross country practice, trying to get out of running like all the other kids do, but most of them don't usually climb trees."
The village, including Trustee Bob Parr, started organizing a service in specialist Partin's honor.
"I'm proud of him,” Parr said. “See him helping out his dad all the time, cutting grass. He was just a good young man, fine young man."
Parr has known the Partin family for decades. He said Partin's death is the second loss for the family in the last year.
“It’s a tragedy, a real tragedy,” Parr said. “Young man like that, that had so much to offer, a whole life in front of him, and something like that happens, it's just sad. So sad for the family. Such good people, such good people."
Principal Lee said Partin will never be forgotten.
"I hope that they are able to find the answers that they need, the family,” he said. “And that they can move forward from this. I know it's going to be difficult, I have boys about his age, it would be tough."
Thursday Partin's family met his body in Indianapolis.
The funeral service will be held at Sunset Funeral Home in Danville this Saturday at noon.
All are welcome.