Lightning strike destroys Lufkin man's shed

LUFKIN, TX (KTRE) - A former Lufkin mayor is hoping the phrase, "lightning never strikes the same place twice" holds true, after a shed in his backyard is hit by lightning and burned to the ground.  

Louis Bronaugh and his wife were sitting in two lawn chairs in their backyard as a storm blew through the area around 7 p.m. Saturday.

Bronaugh said, "The storm was a really big storm, a lot of lightning. Enough we decided to go in the house."

The Bronaughs' decision to go inside was the right one because just 15 minutes later, lightning hit one of their outdoor sheds and it went up in flames, just feet from where they were previously sitting.

Bronaugh said there was lightning all around and he "walked in and sat down and looked back out the window and I see the fire going strong. We were in more danger than we thought."

The East Texas News Weather Team estimates the storm produced about 2,000 lightning strikes per hour.

The fire decimated the building where Bronaugh kept his riding lawn mower, extra gasoline and other lawn tools. The flames were so hot they scorched a nearby pine tree, which the couple plans to cut down, and melted the chairs the couple was sitting in earlier.

Lufkin Fire Department was quick to respond to the call and got the fire under control before the flames before it could cause any more damage. Bronaugh said he's bragging on the fire department  because they were perfect. He said "I have a real soft spot in my heart for that group but they were here and tore the thing down and came back later on to make sure it didn't flare up again."

Bronaugh says he lost a lot of special mementos in the fire but is mostly just thankful that garage wasn't attached to his house. "But it's sad, a lot of personal things were in there that are irreplaceable. "

In light of losing his shed Bronaugh still managed to have a sense of humor and said he was glad he mowed his grass this week since he doesn't have a lawn mower anymore.

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