Clearwater police to honor 3 people who saved Sand Key lightning strike victims

The Clearwater Police Department will honor three people Friday with the Samaritan Award for their life-saving efforts earlier this week in a lightning strike on Sand Key.

Cassandra Thomas, a pediatric nurse from Pennsylvania, and Kirk Pattison, a police officer from Illinois, along with Pattison’s wife Jenny, will receive the honor at 10:30 a.m. Friday during a ceremony at police department headquarters, 645 Pierce St.

The three were the first ones on the scene when two teenagers from North Carolina were injured by a lightning strike Tuesday afternoon on Sand Key.

Cameron Poimboeuf, 15, had no pulse and was lifeless on the sand. Jansen Tabor, 18, was nearby and injured as well.

Thomas and the two Pattisons gave first aid including CPR to the two teenagers until personnel from Clearwater Fire & Rescue arrived just minutes later. Fire medics then took over the treatment and the two were rushed to local hospitals.

Tabor was released from Tampa General Hospital on Thursday. Poimbouef is walking and talking but still receiving treatment at the same hospital.

The CPD Samaritan Award is given to those who go above and beyond in helping others. provides commenting to allow for constructive discussion on the stories we cover. In order to comment here, you acknowledge you have read and agreed to our Terms of Service. Commenters who violate these terms, including use of vulgar language or racial slurs, will be banned. Please be respectful of the opinions of others and keep the conversation on topic and civil. If you see an inappropriate comment, please flag it for our moderators to review.

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