CAMP PENDLETON — Marine Corps officials have ruled the death of Lance Cpl. Riley Schultz — who died from a gunshot wound to the head while on duty at Camp Pendleton — a suicide.
The body of Schultz, 19, was found close to where he was standing guard in the early morning hours Monday, March 15.
“The lead medical examiner investigating the March 15 death of Lance Cpl. Riley Schultz, a Marine with 1st Light Armored Reconnaissance Battalion, has determined the cause of death as suicide,” 1st Lt. Cameron Edinburgh said Wednesday, March 27.
Schultz’s mother, Misty Schultz-McCoy, of Longmont, Colo., said on Tuesday that Marine Corps officials had “unofficially” said his death did not appear to be self-inflicted.
Schultz was standing watch over his platoon’s vehicles and equipment, on a shift set to last from 3:50 to 5 a.m. A fellow Marine found his body after arriving to relieve him.
“Our deepest condolences are with Lance Cpl. Schultz’s family, friends and fellow Marines,” Edinburgh said.
Schultz’s aunt, Danielle Spielman, of Huntington Beach, said Wednesday she was shocked to hear the ruling that her nephew took his life.
“I had a really close relationship with him,” she said. “He was happy-go-lucky. He never said anything bad about the Marine Corps or anything bad about being a Marine. He had just paid off his credit card, he was talking to three girls and had bought a plane ticket home to see his family.
“I’m completely blindsided.”
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