Victim thanks Good Samaritans after lightning strike

Clearwater police presented awards to the three who rendered aid

CLEARWATER, Fla. (WFLA) – Jansen Tabor, 18, can tell a story that few can.  He was struck by lightning and lived to tell about it.  Friday, Tabor met with the three Good Samaritans who helped him and his friend 15-year-old Cameron Poimboeuf after they were hit.

It was Tuesday afternoon. The teens were on Sand Key when the storms quickly moved in from the gulf. They started running for cover when the pair was hit.

“I remember the rain hitting us and we started running and I just remember waking up face down in the sand, not being able to move both my legs.  Lost feeling in both of them and could only move my left leg,”  Tabor said.  “I remember smelling burnt hair.”

RELATED: Parents of lightning strike victims are grateful as the teens recover

Kirk Pattison, a police officer from Illinois, his wife, and Cassandra Thomas, a nurse from Pennsylvania rain to the teens’ aid.  “I knew, I knew on my way down that it was not going to be good,”  Thomas said.

Friday the Clearwater Police Department presented the three with Samaritan Award for their life-saving efforts.  “To honor your helpful and selfless act, the Clearwater Police Department would like to present you with our Good Samaritan Medal…  ”  Police Chief Dan Slaughter said.

Claudette Tabor, Jansen’s mother, is thankful her son survived and recalls the terror she experienced that day. “Saw him in the ambulance and they were working on Cameron.  It was very scary,”  Claudette said.  “Being a parent and I’m just so thankful first responders were there so quickly and Cassandra and Kirk were there, now that I know their names.  I mean, forever grateful to them. ”

The Tabors were vacationing here from Charlotte and are headed back home on Saturday.  Cameron Poimboeuf is still recovering from his injuries at Tampa General Hospital.  According to authorities, he is walking and talking but still receiving treatment. 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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