What to Know
- Brendan Darby was in the middle of his exercise at a New Jersey school field Thursday night when storms rolled in
- Nineteen-year-old Darby is counting his blessings after being struck by lightning
- “I feel very lucky,” Darby said.
Brendan Darby was in the middle of his exercise at a New Jersey school field Thursday night when storms rolled in. The next thing he remembers is laying on the ground – shaken and 20 feet away from the soccer goal.
Nineteen-year-old Darby is counting his blessings after being struck by lightning.
“I’ve never met anyone that’s been hit by lightning,” he tells News 4 New York. “I thought that when you get hit by lighting you die, you’re toast.”
When Darby heard thunder while on the field, he immediately thought he should start heading home because “it was getting a little sketchy.”
Storm Team 4’s Lightning Tracker show the bolt striking at 7:48 p.m. Thursday. The lightning hit the ground and knocked Darby unconscious.
Darby, disoriented, slowly got up and managed to get help from a neighbor near the field who eventually called 911.
“He was talking really talking fast and everything,” the neighbor, Beth Tunny, said, adding that Darby was “excitable” and “scared.”
Darby said he was checked out by medical professionals to make sure his heart was OK since some who are struck by lightning go into cardiac arrest.
Chatham Police say Darby is lucky and his experience should serve as an example to others who find themselves outside during a thunderstorm.
“It is important that people understand that these storms are coming in very quickly. They are coming in much more violent than I ever remember them,” Chatham Police Chief Brian Gibbons said. “It is important that they seek adequate shelter when they come in.”
Darby is still reeling from his incredible, yet frightening, experience.
“I feel very lucky,” Darby said. “I’m still kind of processing that I was hit by lightning and I could have died. It’s a little scary, but I’m just glad I’m OK.