Taking a direct hit from lightning usually doesn’t have a good outcome. This story has a good ending, however.
19-year-old Connor Benson and his 23-year-old friend Alex Steele of Annapolis, Maryland are now in good condition after lightning strikes on a nearby beach stopped their hearts.
The two men rushed out to the beach to secure some boating equipment during a storm. WJZ-TV in Baltimore reports that as they were standing in wet sand, a lightning bolt struck nearby.
Neighbors, including a doctor saw what happened and rushed to them to begin CPR.
Both men were taken to Anne Arundel Medical Center where they were barely alive. Doctors put them in a medically-induced coma.
“When you put them in a deep coma, the brain is very metabolic and active and by slowing the brain down to a point where it’s barely working, you decrease how much glucose it uses and hopefully decrease how much damage incurs while it did not get the oxygen or the flow that it needed,” said Dr. Keith Goulet of Anne Arundel Medical Center.
Benson and Steele both awoke from the coma on Friday. The family says they have slowly begun to speak and walk and are showing signs of returning to normal.