Lightning strikes group of hikers; teen hospitalized |

Lightning strikes group of hikers; teen hospitalized

Chad Abraham
Paul Conrad/The Aspen Times

MARBLE ” Seven people hit by lightning outside Marble were in separate groups Monday and had met a quarter of the way up Arkansas Mountain near Lead King Basin.

When they stopped to rest, lightning struck a tree and traveled into 15-year-old Brock Neville, who was leaning against the tree. Neville, of Colwich, Kan., was in intensive care Tuesday at Valley View Hospital. Rescuers performing CPR revived him twice before he appeared to recover and he was able to talk to rescuers, a Gunnison County Sheriff’s Office statement says.

“Residual electricity dispersed throughout the nearby ground, and all other party members suffered, to various extents, the effects,” the news release says.

The other hikers, who were not seriously hurt, were two children from Denver, ages 5 and 9; Charlie Wooldridge, age unknown, and Maria Wooldridge, 45, both of Denver; Chad Mohr, 31, of Wichita, Kan.; and Jaclyn Snyder, 24, of Cheney, Kan.

Snyder was treated in Marble for burns to both legs. The six hikers were treated at the hospital and released. Neville was in serious but stable condition Tuesday. A dog that was with the hikers died.

Members of the response team said the group was around 11,400 feet, in an area with exposed ridges, scree fields and few trees, when the storm blew in. Four hikers, including one with minor injuries, reached Marble around 3:30 p.m. and alerted authorities.

A five-member rescue team on an ATV and in a modified SUV brought down the three other hikers.

The teen was in a red sleeping bag and attached to a heart monitor, an oxygen mask over his face when he arrived at the fire station. He moved his arms slightly but his eyes remained shut as he was transferred from the SUV to another ambulance.

Vail Daily, Vail, Colorado

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