Fort Jackson recruits to graduate after surviving lightning strike, basic training

By JEFF WILKINSON | The State (Tribune News Service) | Published: July 13, 2018

Fifteen Fort Jackson recruits who survived a lightning strike Thursday returned to training Friday.

The trainees involved in the incident were evaluated Thursday night by medical personnel at Palmetto Health Richland and returned to duty, according to the fort’s Facebook page.

When the lightning strike occurred, between 3:45 and 4 p.m., the recruits were in the final stage of training, Fort Jackson officials said. About 200 soldier were taking part in the exercise.

None of the soldiers was struck by lightning, the officials reported, and they are scheduled to graduate in a few weeks.

The soldiers in the 2nd Battalion, 13th Infantry Regiment had “hunkered down when they heard the lightning,” spokeswoman Leslie Ann Sully said.

Fort Jackson is the Army’s largest basic training installation, with more than 50,000 recruits assigned there each year.

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