Spc. Matthew R. Turcotte died around 2:30 a.m. local time Wednesday during a combined-arms, live-fire training exercise conducted at night, according to a statement released by the Colorado Army post.
The service has launched an investigation into the incident even though the 20-year-old’s death was ruled an accident, the statement said.
A native of North Smithfield, Rhode Island, Turcotte first joined the Army in August 2015. In December of that year he was assigned to Fort Carson as an infantryman with the 2nd Infantry Brigade Combat Team, 4th Infantry Division.
Second Brigade commander Col. David Zinn called Turcotte "a tremendous soldier" in the statement. "Our deepest condolences go out to Matthew Turcotte’s family on his tragic and unexpected passing," he said.
Turcotte’s high school football coach, Wes Pennington, told the Providence Journal that he’ll remember his former student as a good kid. "He was going to be a productive part of the community and this country," he said. "If we had more young men like him we wouldn’t have to worry about the future of this country."
Congressman Doug Lamborn (R-CO) expressed condolences on Twitter as well.
Turcotte is the third Fort Carson solider to die in 24 hours. Tuesday evening 38-year-old Chief Warrant Officer 2 Lamont O. Williams was killed in Stafford County, Virginia, while on leave. His cause of death has not been confirmed. Around 10 p.m. the same day, Sgt. Michael J. Martinez, 22, was pronounced dead while deployed in Germany’s Grafenwoehr training area after being found unresponsive. His cause of death is also not known.
During his time in the service, Turcotte earned a number of honors, including the National Defense Service Medal, NATO Medal, Army Service Ribbon, Overseas Ribbon, Army Achievement Medal, Armed Forces Expeditionary Medal and Global War on Terrorism Service Medal.