Vigil held at Lake Fairview to honor young rowers after lightning strike

Body of missing child found in recovery effort, officials say

A community is in mourning after a tragedy this week at Lake Fairview. Officials said three of the children returned home safely with their parents, but the lightning strike sent one child to the hospital and another child’s body was recovered after a more than 24-hour search of the lake.

ORLANDO, Fla. – A community is in mourning after a tragedy this week at Lake Fairview.

Kim Watson was among the dozens at a vigil Saturday morning after Orlando Fire officials said a boat carrying five young rowers overturned Thursday evening after a lightning strike.

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“I pray for the family and the poor kids who survived this and witnessed it. I can’t imagine,” Watson said. “We want to share our love and support and we don’t know of any other way to do it right now.”

Officials said three of the children returned home safely with their parents, but the lightning strike sent one child to the hospital and another child’s body was recovered after a more than 24-hour search of the lake.

One child was injured and another went missing after a lightning strike Thursday afternoon at Lake Fairview in Orlando, officials said.

This comes after a makeshift memorial continues to grow outside of North Orlando Rowing.

The rowing club’s post on Facebook said in part, “We learned we lost one of our rowers in this tragic accident. The NOR family is devastated and heartbroken.”

In working to learn more about the kids involved, News 6 checked, and according to a Facebook post, the missing child attended Annunciation Catholic Academy in Altamonte Springs.

Beth Schumacher was also at Saturday morning’s vigil.

“When we got the news, it was so tragic and so heartbreaking. I can’t imagine their lives now going forward,” Schumacher said. “We are here in support and honor for the families.”

News 6 talked to people who said even though they were already taking precautions while out on the water, they’re doing even more to make sure they stay safe after hearing about this heartbreaking tragedy.

“What we’re going to do is be more careful about weather,” said Melissa Romero. “Knowing Florida weather, things can change very quickly.”


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About the Author:

Jerry Askin is an Atlanta native who came to News 6 in March 2018 with an extensive background in breaking news.