Two days after the death of former Bachelorette contestant Julien Hug, the one-time reality star's father, Bertrand Hug, is opening up to UsMagazine.com about his son's passing.
"He took his own life," Bertrand tells Us of Julien, 35.
Julien's body was found off a highway in the Southern California desert on Wednesday. Coroners confirmed Friday that Julien's cause of death was a self-inflicted gunshot wound.
And Julien (who briefly competed on the fifth season of The Bachelorette with Jillian Harris) "planned this," his grieving father says.
"He left a letter for me, his mom, co-workers, his girlfriend at the time. He wanted us to know it was his only way out."
What went wrong?
"He was depressed and struggling, and nobody knew," his grieving father says. "He couldn't find his way."
Bertrand spoke with detectives who found Julien's body; authorities described the site of his son's suicide as "the most beautiful place, where he could see forever. You could see the ocean."
Adds Bertrand: "He was the most beautiful loving person you could ever imagine." The thrill-seeking Julien loved to sky-dive, and even took his mom, Denise, on a skydiving adventure for her 60th birthday.
"It was one of the happiest moments of his life,” he said. "He tried to make everyone feel good. He was a great guy," he said, adding that Julien loved to volunteer for charities like Kids Korps USA and Children's Hospital.
A public funeral service is planned for next Friday, Nov. 12 at a to-be-determined location. All are welcome, Bertand said.
In lieu of flowers, Bertand asks well-wishers to send donations to the Julien Hug Foundation, c/o of the The Village Community Presbyterian Church at 6225 Paseo Delicias, Rancho Sante Fe, Calif., 92067.