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15 Year-Old Football Player Killed by Lightning


October, 2005

Coconut Creek, Fla: A 15-year-old high school football player was killed and several other people were injured by lightning after the game was stopped because of a thunderstorm.

Schaffner Noel was hit in the chest and transported to a hospital, where he was pronounced dead, said Coconut Creek police spokeswoman, Judy Banks.

Another football player and a cheerleader who had been standing next to Noel were also injured. They were hospitalized and listed in serious but stable condition, Banks said.

Several other students and a police officer were also knocked down by the lightning strike. They were treated at Monarch High School for cuts, bruises and abrasions, Banks said.

According to witnesses, the referees had stopped the football game because of thunder. Everyone was coming off the field when Noel was struck.

The thunderstorm moved into the area quickly, leaving little warning for the coaches, faculty and students.

Noels brother Wagner, 16, who plays varsity football at the school, described a chaotic scene after the lightning struck.

"We were starting to walk in and we saw the junior varsities walking in too and then we saw this huge lightning. It seemed like it hit the field, so everybody started running."




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