Police: Sanford man killed in lightning strike to nearby tree

SANFORD, North Carolina (WTVD) -- Authorities in Sanford say a 39-year-old man died Tuesday night following a lightning strike to a nearby tree.

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Police say officers were called to the 1000 block of S. Vance Street after David Charles Everette was found unresponsive, and lying face down in a yard.

A neighbor, Terill Jackson, told ABC11 he saw Everette's body underneath a tree after what he called a fierce thunderstorm around 7:30 p.m.

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Emergency crews determined that he died as the result of the lightning strike, according to police.

A family friend said Everette was a father of two teenagers, and had a third child on the way.

Everette was trying to run to the store when the storm hit but did not make it, said the friend, Al Smith, who is also a pastor in Sanford. He said Everette tried to seek shelter under an oak tree.

Smith said he was with Everette's family at the hospital.

A service for Everette will be held Sunday at Knotts Funeral Home, 719 Wall St. in Sanford. His funeral is planned for Monday at Works for Christ Christian Center, 1395 Fire Tower Road in Sanford.
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