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Rodeo athlete and horse die instantly after being struck by lighting

Rodeo athlete and horse die instantly after being struck by lighting

Terrel Vineyard was checking his cattle when he and his animal were struck.

A Nebraska rodeo athlete and his horse have freakishly died after being struck by lightning.

According to the 2022 Lighting Safety Council, the 27 year old was checking his cattle in Oshkosh, Nebraska, on June 21, when he and his animal were struck.

Officials had received a call around 2pm and showed up at the scene thereafter.

However, Terrel Vineyard and his horse, Dose, were pronounced dead shortly after emergency services arrived.

An autopsy confirmed the lightning strike caused his death.

A GoFundMe page was subsequently set up for Vineyard’s wife and his three daughters.


“Terrel Vineyard, 27, of Oshkosh passed away Wednesday afternoon, June 21, 2023 near Oshkosh. He was an amazing young man and very important to this community. These funds will help his beautiful family,” it said.

According to the website, Vineyard began riding when he was four and was gifted his horse, Cowboy, by his father, Shawn.

Vineyard rode him from junior high to college.

Impressively, his horse went on to win American Quarter Horse Association (AQHA) Horse of the Year three times and qualified for Junior High National Rodeo Finals in Gallup, New Mexico, twice in team roping and ribbon roping.

It led Vineyard to attend Laramie County Community College in Cheyenne, Wyoming, on a rodeo scholarship in 2014.

In 2017, the athlete returned home to work on his family’s ranch full time before meeting his wife, Stacey.

The two had three daughters together, and earlier this year, in February, they wed in a private ceremony in Colorado with their children present.

So far, the crowdfunding platform has raised over $12,980 (AUD $19,511).

According to the Centre for Disease Control and Prevention, about 40 million lightning strikes hit the ground in the United States each year.

But the odds of being struck by lightning in a given year are less than one in a million, and almost 90 per cent of all lightning strike victims survive.

The Lightning Safety Council said Vineyard’s death marks the first lightning-caused fatality for a person in Nebraska this year.

Florida, Texas, Colorado, North Carolina, Alabama, Arizona, Georgia, Missouri, New Jersey, and Pennsylvania have the most lightning deaths and injuries.

Florida is considered the ‘lightning capital’ of the country, with more than 2,000 lightning injuries over the past five decades.

Featured Image Credit: GoFundMe. Pexel/Philippe Donn

Topics: News, Animals