ATLANTA, Ga. - An Atlanta man claimed lightning went right through his foot, and blew him out of his shoes. Sean O'Connor said he was getting ready to do some yard work Saturday after work. He said the sun was out, and he couldn't see or hear any thunder or lightning.
"Just as I picked up the rake, I heard a loud crashing sound," O'Connor said. "A few moments later I was picking myself up off the ground. I had the taste of blood in my mouth. I noticed my leg was burning a little bit."
O'Connor was home alone, so it took him a bit to realize what had just happened.
"My leg hairs were singed. I could smell the burnt hair," he explained. "I looked across the driveway and I could see my boots over there. They were no longer on my feet, and one of them was smoking'. At that point I realized I had just been hit by lightning."
O'Connor called his wife and shot cell phone video of the smoking boot and his bleeding tongue to prove to her he wasn't kidding. He seems dazed in the video shot just moments after he came to.
She urged him to go to the emergency room right away.
"In my mind, I'd survived a lightning strike, and I didn't think things could get any worse from there," said O'Connor.
Because a lightning strike interrupts your own heart's electrical system it caused O'Connor's heart to beat irregularly. Doctors kept him overnight.
His kids think he's pretty cool. And, while he's taking the severity of it all in stride, he considers himself lucky.
"I've had a lot of friends comment and ask me if I can now bend spoons with my mind, which I don't," O'Connor said, smiling.
O'Connor said doctors pointed out to him that lightning doesn't strike many people, about 1 in 700,000. And very few survive to tell the story like he did.