A lightning bolt hit a pine tree about 130 feet away from the tent of four O’Fallon Boy Scouts on this day in 2000. The electricity apparently went through the tree’s roots and into the tent, blowing four holes in its bottom. 

One Scout was knocked unconscious and was not breathing. He likely would have died if not for the quick actions of one of the Scout leaders who performed CPR.

The other Scouts suffered first to third degree burns on their backs and arms.  

Since 1995, Associated Press and newspaper archives show that seven Scouts and Scout leaders have been killed, and about 50 injured in 15 lightning incidents at Scout camps or on expeditions.

This post is based on content from The Department of Commerce Book “Storm Data, June 2000, Volume 42, No. 6”, as well as from Ross Malone. A historian and a retired school teacher, Ross has authored many books about Missouri’s history, weird facts, and folk tales. He has also written children’s historical fiction. Visit his website, and buy his books in the Missouri Life store.

Photo credit: Freepik