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Stillwater girl dies after lightning strike

We've all been told not to be outside with metal objects during a thunderstorm.  Sometimes, even that isn't enough.

Taylor Zimmerman, a 14-year-old girl from Stillwater, was killed yesterday after being struck by lightning.  Zimmerman was not doing anything dangerous, just dancing in the rain in her own backyard.

From the Star Tribune report:

Taylor Zimmerman was not breathing and had no pulse when police, fire crews and paramedics were called to her house on the 1000 block of 6th Street S. about 3 p.m., Stillwater police Sgt. Chris Felsch said. About halfway to Regions Hospital in St. Paul, paramedics were able to restore her pulse, Felsch said.

However, at 8 p.m., Molly Snyder, a spokeswoman for Gillette Children's Hospital, which has a partnership with Regions, said Taylor had died. She did not have an exact time of death, but said it was during the afternoon hours.

Apparently the lightning struck a tree under which Taylor was running, and it transferred to her body.  No doubt that hearts are heavy in Stillwater after this freak accident.

According to the National Weather Service, "the best way to avoid lightning is to go inside during a thunderstorm."


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