Florida teen dies after being struck by lightning during hunting trip with her dad

PALATKA, FL – Earlier this week, a 16-year-old girl named Baylee Holbrook was fatally struck by lightning during a hunting trip with her father. The Putnam County Sheriff’s Office reported that the lightning hit a tree late Tuesday afternoon, causing both Holbrook and her father to be struck. The father lost consciousness and upon regaining it, found his daughter in critical condition and not breathing.

He immediately called 911 and began performing CPR until emergency personnel arrived on the scene. Holbrook was then rushed to a local hospital for further treatment. Despite her critical condition, the Sheriff’s Office praised her fighting spirit in a Facebook post on Wednesday, extending prayers to her family and friends.

The local community rallied around the Holbrook family, with students at Palatka Junior-Senior High School gathering to pray for Baylee on Wednesday. However, the teenager succumbed to her injuries on Thursday morning, surrounded by her loved ones.

Following her death, Trinity Baptist Church took to social media to express their condolences and support for the Holbrook family. Baylee, a varsity cheerleader, was remembered by friends, teammates, and family at a prayer rally on Wednesday as a vibrant individual with a contagious smile. Her love for hunting, fishing, and the outdoors was also highlighted.

The Putnam County Sheriff’s Office has noted an uptick in lightning strikes in the area this week, reminding the public that lightning can strike up to 10 miles away from any area impacted by rainfall. According to reports made by the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, approximately 20 people are killed by lightning strikes across the country each year, with hundreds more injured. Last year, four of the 19 reported deaths related to lightning strikes occurred in Florida.