(TYLER MORNING TELEGRAPH) - Army officials say an Alaska-based paratrooper from Tyler has died in a traffic accident northeast of Anchorage.
U.S. Army Alaska officials say in a release that 23-year-old Spc. Shawn N. Bounds of died early Saturday morning when his vehicle rolled in the public use area of the Knik River.
He was transported by emergency responders to a hospital in nearby Palmer, where he was pronounced dead just after 4 a.m.
The Army says the fire support specialist was assigned to the 4th Infantry Brigade Combat Team (Airborne), 25th Infantry Division at the Anchorage base on October 2011.
He deployed to Afghanistan from December 2011 to September 2012. He joined the Army in May 2011. Alaska State Troopers are investigating the fatal accident.
In December 2012, Bounds surprised his sister, Krystle, then 23, during her pinning ceremony for The University of Texas at Tyler nursing students.
Bounds, who had been away from his family for almost a year at that time, came out from behind a black curtain wearing his Army dress uniform and holding a bouquet of yellow roses.
"He's not supposed to be here," Krystle said during a 2012 interview of her thoughts the moment she saw him. "It was pretty surreal."