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The soldier found dead near his Fort Hood, Texas barracks over the weekend was identified by Army officials Wednesday.

Spc. Maxwell Hockin, 26, was found in his company area Saturday, officials said in a statement. 

The cause of death was not released. Hockin entered the Army in March 2017 and was assigned to the 1st Armored Brigade Combat Team.

He had been with his unit, the 91st Engineer Battalion, since July 2017, the Army said. 

Army Basic Training photo of Spc. Maxwell Hockin (U.S. Army)

"The entire Saber family is devastated by the loss of our true teammate and friend Specialist Maxwell Hockin," said Lt. Col. Patrick Sullivan, commander, 91st Engineer Battalion. "He had an outstanding work ethic, was a mentor to his peers, and was always willing to help out the team. He will truly be missed."

"Our thoughts and our prayers are with Maxwell’s family during this difficult time," Sullivan added. 

Hockin's death is being investigated by the U.S. Army Criminal Investigation Command.


The incident came days after another Fort Hood soldier, Pfc. Jennifer Sewell, was found safe after she failed to report for duty last week. She has since returned to Texas, base officials said. 

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California Officials Reveal How Hiking Family Mysteriously Dropped Dead

A family of three found dead on a Northern California hiking trail in August died of heat exposure and possible dehydration, the local sheriff’s office revealed Thursday.

“Heat-related deaths are extremely difficult to investigate,” Mariposa County sheriff Jeremy Briese said at a press conference, citing an official cause of death of hyperthermia.

The bodies of John Gerrish, Ellen Chung, and their 1-year-old daughter Muji were found mid-August on the Savage Lundy Trail, a remote area of Sierra National Forest. Their dog Oksi was lying next to them, also dead.

The family had been hiking on a trail where temperatures were sky-high, between 107 and 109 degrees, Briese said Thursday. There was little shade due to an earlier fire in the area. Sheriff’s deputies only found one empty water container with the family.

Initially, officials were unable to discern a cause of death and approached the family’s bodies wearing Hazmat suits. Speculation ran rampant, and the sheriff’s office ruled out multiple possible causes of death in the intervening months.

The bodies showed no wounds or trauma, and even autopsies did not give immediate clues as to the cause. Officials expressed public frustration in the weeks after the discovery. In September, officials closed the trail where the family was found for “unknown hazards” but reopened it soon after.

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