Columbus Fire Lieutenant Struck By Lightning Remains Hospitalized


A Columbus fire lieutenant remains in critical condition after he was struck by lightning outside of Crew Stadium on Saturday.

The game was postponed due to extenuating circumstances, but was rescheduled for Sunday.

Many fans left Saturday night not knowing why the game had been cancelled.

"We were in waiting for the rain to stop," said Meredith Minogue. "It had stopped so we thought the game was going to start and it wasn't until we got home and looked it up to find out the reason."

Many fans said they had an idea the delay was due to dangerous weather.

"We had assumed something had happened with the lightning strike. It was very close and being in close proximity to where it happened and then obviously the squad and the fire trucks came immediately, so that's what sort of clued us in that something was wrong," said Jeannie Vaccar.

Firefighters said Lieutenant Stu Tudor had just finished playing a charity soccer game when he was struck by lightning in the parking lot.

"He had separated from the group. There was a large flash or a loud boom and a bright flash and they saw someone down, but they didn't know it was him," said Battalion Chief Shawn Koser.

Koser said medics worked on Tudor at the stadium before he was rushed to Ohio State Medical Center.

Tudor has been with the fire department for 23 years and currently serves at Station 10 in Franklinton.

Koser said a critical incident stress management team was called in to help the firefighters who responded to Tudor, but said the entire department was anxious.

"We are all affected when one of our own is injured of killed, especially someone they work that closely with. It's an emotional event for them," Koser said.

There were kind thoughts for Tudor at Sunday's game as members of the Columbus Crew signed a banner wishing him well.

Tudor is hospitalized at The Ohio State University Wexner Medical Center where doctors plan to monitor him closely over the next 48 hours.

The extent of his injuries have not yet been released.

His children and brother are currently traveling to central Ohio to be by his side.