Schoolfriends of the former Royal Marine from Barnsley killed fighting against Islamic State in Syria say they are mourning a "real character" and remembering his "cheeky smile".
Konstandinos Erik Scurfield from Royston, was reportedly shot dead on Monday while fighting alongside Kurdish forces in the frontline village of Tel Khuzela.
Mr Scurfield's friends from Royston High School, where he studied until 2006, said they are hoping to organise a reunion event in his memory.
And they said they are struggling to reconcile the reports of his front-line fighting in Syria with the laid-back, long-haired, drama-loving teenager they knew.
Emma Hyman, 24, said his school friends have found it difficult to match the fun-loving actor who was loved by everyone in his year with the pictures they have seen of him over the last couple days in military poses wearing combat fatigues.
"He was definitely a bit of an extrovert and he wanted to be a actor," Miss Hyman said.
"He was such a people-person and when he went into the forces it was a big surprise. He wasn't a fighter. He didn't get into any fights at school or anything like that. It's a bit of a mystery because he didn't show interest in those kind of things at all at school. You put people in groups - certain things they might do with their lives and I would never have had him down as becoming a soldier."
She said he also had long hair at school, adding: "Seeing these pictures with his short, soldier hair, is really strange."
Miss Hyman said Mr Scurfield, who was known as Kosta at school, was an extremely popular student and was also very clever - in the top sets for everything.
She said he came to Royston High, which no longer exists, in his early teens from Nottingham and was immediately noticeable because he did not have the ubiquitous Barnsley accent and was "really well-spoken, very polite and very respectful".
She said: "Everybody loved him because he was a real character. He was one of those people who you couldn't find anything negative at all to say about him. He was friendly and funny and really laid back. He had such a cheeky smile. He got on with everybody. That's why it's such a shock for us all. We're trying to organise something so we can all get together and remember him. It's at the early stages at the moment. It's a shame we are going to all come together in these circumstances."
Mr Scurfield's family earlier spoke of their pride in him, while his former partner described him as "amazing" for "doing an unselfish act".