Sunday, June 01, 2014

Hit by Lightning

There is a video going around of a storm chaser who was filming a storm when hit by lightning. From what I gather, he lived. I've only seen one person hit by lightning, and that person died. This is the very short version of that story.
I was probably 12 and the ballboy on my older brother's semi-pro baseball team. They were playing in, I think, Crocheron Park in Queens, NY when a thunderstorm suddenly and unexpectedly came up. Instant torrential rain and lots of lightning. The coaches told the kids to walk off the field: As we did, an old couple walking on a cement walking path appeared. The woman, probably 80, and the man, same age, were holding hands. She released her hand from his and reached into her purse and took out a tissue. She wiped her face from the raindrops. In that instant a lightning bolt hit a tree in front of them and jumped to him. He was bounced off the ground and flew maybe 10 feet high and 15 feet forward from the impact and hit the tree, then fell. When we got to him he was dead. His pant legs on both legs were burned open on the back; the meat of his exposed skin was purple/yellow. The soles of his shoes had been blown off at the heel, exposing his purple/yellow feet. I never want to see another person dead from lightning again. The poor woman was inconsolate.

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