BOISE, Idaho (KTVB) – It was a Memorial Day weekend that Ryan Cross will never forget.
Cross spent the weekend camping, riding four-wheelers and dirt bikes with friends near Idaho City.
She said the group got caught in the storm and were looking for a way back out of the woods.
“They were riding, and it started raining and then, all of a sudden, it started hailing pretty heavily so they stopped,” said Heather Cross. “Ryan got off his four-wheeler, went under a tree to protect himself from the hail, leaned up against a tree, was looking at a map on his phone, and that is when it all happened.”
That’s when Ryan was struck by a bolt of lightning.
Two of Ryan’s friends were also impacted by the lightning bolt. One was hit indirectly by the lightning, while the other endured intense ringing in his ears.
After a brief moment of unsconsciousness, one of the men ran down the road to find help.
He stumbled upon a group in an SUV and used “OnStar” to call paramedics.
“That helped save his life,” Heather said.
As Ryan was rushed to a hospital, Heather learned about the accident.
“I really just tried to stay strong,” she said. “The drive from Nampa to here was the longest drive of my life. I didn’t know what I was going to walk into.”
Doctors say Ryan has bleeding in his brain and was admitted to the intensive care unit.
The lightning struck his head and went down his back.
Heather says Ryan is now alert, eating and has even been able to walk around a bit.
However, doctors do not know how he will be affected long-term because of the lightning strike.