“You don’t expect your kids…to die before you especially not by a freak accident,” she said as tears ran down her face.
James was on Siesta Key beach at about 2:30 p.m. Sunday when a severe storm rolled in.
“I couldn’t believe how quick it moved,” said Wayne Racine.
He was on the beach when the storm came in.
“I heard whistles, horns going off," he said. "You heard lifeguards signaling people to get off the beach quick. By the time I got to the car the lightning was on top of us.”
Lifeguards issued a double red flag warning.
“When you have a double red flag tells your lifeguards don’t want you in the water or on the beach,” said Lifeguard Captain Roy Routh.
That’s when the sky scan lightning detector indicated lightning was too close and getting closer.
“When it gets 8-20 miles, start clearing the bleach,” Routh said.
Meanwhile, a mile south of the public beach, witnesses told Talena her son was packing up to leave as well.
“The one who did CPR said she heard the loud boom,” she said. “He saw it where it hit his keys hanging on his belt loop. It came up to his head and down through his chin. It took him instantly. As soon as it hit, he was gone. At least I know he wasn’t suffering.”
Talena drove from Gainsville to see her son one last time.
“Better than nothing, just to hold him tell him bye I love him,” she said. “I know he’s not there. God hand picked him.”
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