Michael Mantenuto
Michael Mantenuto arrives to the premiere of "Miracle" at Grauman's Chinese Theater in on February 2nd, 2004 in Hollywood. Getty Images/Kevin Winter

Michael Mantenuto, who played former NHL star Jack O'Callahan in Disney’s 2004 “Miracle” movie, was found dead earlier this week, reports said Thursday. The 35-year-old shot himself in the head, according to law enforcement officials in Des Moines, Washington.

Mantenuto was found dead in his car by Des Moines police, Monday. The Des Moines Police Department was alerted around 1:30 p.m. local time (4:30 EDT) about "injured or perhaps deceased" person in a vehicle at Saltwater State Park, a representative of the department told the Daily News. Police later confirmed that Mantenuto, who was a college hockey player, committed suicide by shooting himself with a handgun in his car at the park, the report added.

The motive of the suicide remains unclear and authorities have launched an investigation into his death.

In “Miracle,” Mantenuto played the role of O’Callahan, the U.S. men’s hockey team member, who injures his knee, but returns to the team to play against the popular Soviets team at the 1980 Winter Olympics, when the U.S. won gold. Mantenuto acted alongside Kurt Russell and Patricia Clarkson in the movie.

Apart from “Miracle,” Mantenuto appeared in the 2006 TV movie “Dirtbags” and “Surfer, Dude” in 2008 — his last movie. Following acting career, he joined the military in 2010 and in 2013 he attended Special Forces training. According to People magazine, he was assigned to 1st Special Forces Group, where he remained a communications sergeant till his death.

Teena Lepene, Mantenuto’s friend from his special forces training told People the former actor was a “charismatic person.”

“He was so much more than just a Miracle actor. … [He] was awesome and charismatic, people were naturally drawn to him,” Lepene reportedly said.

On Wednesday, Col. Guillaume "Will" Beaurpere, the commander for Mantenuto’s 1st Special Forces Group (Airborne), announced Mantenuto’s death.

"Those of you that knew Mike will remember him for his passionate love for his family and his commitment to the health of the force. … The Group is standing by to support the family in any way possible and we will professionally execute those wishes. Our deepest condolences go out to SSG Mantenuto's family, friends and teammates," Beaurpere said in a statement.

Lt. Col. Robert Bockholt, Director of Public Affairs for U.S. Army Special Operations Command at Fort Bragg, told People: “Our deepest condolences go out to Michael Mantenuto’s family, friends, and teammates. … The cause of death is still under investigation.”

Doug Westcott, a photographer whose son Drake was coached by Mantenuto, wrote his condolences on Facebook. He also posted pictures of Mantenuto teaching hockey to Drake.

“It has been a tough 24 hours since I found out one of Drake’s hockey coaches took his own life on Monday,” Westcott stated. “Drake is devastated and confused. Mike Mantenuto meant the world to Drake and they both had talked about their troubles at times. Our hearts go out to his wife Katie, son and teammate Leo, daughter Ava and his parents,” he added.

Mantenuto is survived by his wife Kati Vienneau, daughter Ava, and son Leo. His parents Joseph and Kerry Mantenuto live in Massachusetts.