July 30, 2005 in Nation/World

Lightning strike kills Scout leader

Los Angeles Times

FRESNO, Calif. – Lightning struck Thursday and killed a Boy Scout leader and left a 13-year-old scout brain-dead as their troop scrambled for shelter during an afternoon electrical storm in Sequoia National Park, authorities said Friday.

A second adult troop leader and five other teen scouts suffered injuries.

The deadly incident left residents and family members in the troop’s Napa Valley hometown of St. Helena reeling and comes at a time of grieving for many scouts nationally. On Monday, four adult scout leaders were electrocuted while setting up a tent at the National Scout Jamboree in Virginia.

“They’re freak accidents,” said Laura Bourret as she laid flowers in front of the troop’s headquarters. “They’re both very traumatic and heartbreaking experiences. … I hope this doesn’t discourage youths from participating in Boy Scouts.”

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