Religious Book Seller Struck By Lightning
(CBS4) HIALEAH A man making a trip from Puerto Rico to South Florida to raise money for his religious education remains hospitalized Monday after he was struck down by a bolt of lightning which flew from clear blue sky on Sunday. He was selling religious materials when he was hit.
Hailu Kidane Marian was working with members of his religious group, selling religious materials door-to-door in a Northwest Miami-Dade neighborhood, when the bolt from the blue struck him down.
"I heard a boom, and I looked and the guy jumped back, and he just laid there, stiff," said witness Maria Martinez.
Paramedics say Marian was not breathing and his heart was not beating when they arrived, but they were able to revive him and rushed him to Jackson Memorial hospital, where he was in critical condition Sunday night.
Members of his religious group waited outside the hospital throughout the night for word of his condition.
"He's unconscious, he's in a coma," said Francisco Perez, leader of the Puerto Rico-based group. "It's difficult what happened, you know, but what can we do? Things happen in life, but we still believe in God."
This is the second incident in as many months of someone being struck down by lightning from a clear sky in South Florida.
Last month David Canales, a gardener who worked in the Pinecrest area, was killed when lightning apparently struck him from a rainless sky. Two co-workers standing nearby were unhurt.
CBS4 Meteorologist Jeff Berardelli said 'dry lightning', which can strike even when the sky is clear, can be very dangerous because victims are not expecting it and don't prepare as they might with a storm threatening.
Measurement of lightning strikes in the area Sunday showed only a few bolts compared to the last few days, making Marian especially unlucky to be struck by one of them.
Nobody else was injured when the bolt flew from the sky.