Story is here. Basically, in short form, 18-year-old Corey Williams left the pole vault pit at Carbondale Community High School, Illinois, and was struck by lightning and died at the scene.
Witness said there were no dark clouds, just a light rain. With no previous thunder or lightning. Just a big ol' boom and a kid on the ground.
The obvious statements before the questions:
Pole vaulting involves fiberglass poles, so they bend. I'm ruling out the lightning rod issue, because of the fiberglass *and* the fact the story doesn't mention if he had a pole in his hand.
And he was referred to as a runner, not a pole vaulter.
However, he was near the pole vault pit.
I've seen a pole vault setup. All the framework is metal. That's a lightning rod if ever there was one. So the practical tall thing in storm + metal = lightning attraction is true, again. Don't fool with Mother Nature.
Now the questions:
Knowing the whole pole vault metal structure thing ... has this ever happened before?
Was it just a freak of nature?
Or, is this, perhaps, a smiting?
Is running or jogging really *that* good for you?
Here's an 18-year-old kid who would disagree. Same with the dude remembered for inventing jogging as a sport - Bill Ficks. He died, of a heart attack, while jogging. DOH!
These are the things that keep me awake at night.