THE stepdad of a schoolboy killed by a lightning strike as he played football ran to the stricken youngster to start CPR after watching him collapse, an inquest has heard.
Talented Jordan Banks, nine, was in the middle of training when he suffered ‘unsurvivable’ injuries during a thunderstorm in Blackpool.
The youngster’s stepdad Daniel Beggs, who posted a photo of he and Jordan hand-in-hand on Instagram, rushed to give CPR[/caption]
Today, a coroner said Jordan’s heart stopped after he was struck by a bolt at 5pm.
There was no weather warning in place – because forecasters at the Met Office believed conditions weren’t bad enough, it was heard.
The youngster’s family weren’t present at the inquest. However, it was heard that Jordan’s stepdad Daniel Beggs was at the scene and tried to save his life.
Jordan was rushed to Blackpool Victoria Hospital by ambulance. However, despite medics’ efforts, he couldn’t be revived.
Coroner Alan Wilson said: “This was an extremely rare occurrence.
“Although the weather had changed, it had changed very quickly and there appears to be no obvious reason why Jordan was struck by lightning.”
‘HE PICKED HIM UP IN HIS ARMS’
Emma Gleeson, whose son was due to train after Jordan and was waiting nearby, described the weather as fine at 4.50pm. However, minutes later the tragedy unfolded.
In a statement, Ms Gleeson, who rang an ambulance, said she saw Jordan fall to the floor and Mr Begg run to him.
She said: “Daniel (Begg) clearly was thinking the same thing I was thinking and was saying: ‘He’s gone, he’s gone’.”
The inquest also heard a statement from paramedic Sharon Riley-Clarke, who said she and her colleague were called to the scene shortly after they witnessed a “loud and violent” sudden lightning strike nearby.
She said when they arrived at 5.01pm she saw Mr Begg crouched over Jordan in the field and he shouted to them: “He’s not breathing.”
She added: “He picked him up in his arms and was running to us.”
Football coach Daniel Stenton said all of the sudden he felt “something [he] couldn’t begin to explain” and made him “automatically throw [his] hands over his head”.
The court was told how he turned to see Jordan lying lifeless on the ground.
A report from the Met Office was read aloud. Forecasters said thunder and lightning had been predicted – but it wasn’t believed conditions were severe enough for a weather warning.
Mr Wilson, who recorded a short narrative conclusion, said he planned to write to the Government’s department for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport and bring the matter to its attention.
He said: “If a reminder about the risk lightning can pose is circulated and this somehow minimises the risk that this could occur again then that would be positive and avoid another family having to go through this sort of tragedy.”
Jordan’s family released a heartbreaking statement the day after the tragedy.
“Yesterday our worlds stopped,” they said.
“We lost the brightest star our beautiful boy Jordan.
“His laugh, that infectious smile, golden curls, he was our everything. Wise beyond his years, caring, considerate, generous and so loving.
“Our love is endless. Goodnight beautiful boy. We thank you all for your kind words and support but as a family ask that you respect our wishes and privacy.”
He said: “Jordan was and is the most amazing little person.
“He had the biggest heart and would do anything for anyone, and when parents say they have the best kid ever, he GENERALLY was the best ever and if I ever could of asked for a perfect child that was my Jordan.
“I couldn’t of been prouder of him always putting other people himself, such a selfless little person.
“Even now his kindness has meant that 3 other children may be able to live.”
His laugh, that infectious smile, golden curls, he was our everything
Jordan was well-known in his community for his fundraising. He even left chocolate treats on police cars in January to thank them for their work during the pandemic.
He also raised £2,500 by running 30 miles for a local mental health charity in honour of his Uncle Reece, who took his own life in 2018.
Jordan’s football team, the Clifton Rangers Junior FC, paid tribute after his death.
They said: “Jordan of our U9 Bees, tragically passed away yesterday evening doing what he loved.
“Jordan was a shining light and an inspiration to everyone that he met. A strong, determined and courageous young man, who will be missed by everyone.
“The world has truly lost an extraordinary young man, who had done so much good in his community.
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“We cannot begin to imagine the grief of the family. Our thoughts, prayers, love and hugs go out to them all and to his teammates, friends and coaches who are devastated by the loss.”
Blackpool Tower lit up red in memory of the youngster, while the town hall’s flag was lowered at half-mast.
Mourners also lined the promenade as cars painted with footballs made their way down the road for a procession.
Tragically, despite the efforts of medics, Jordan couldn’t be saved[/caption]
The lad was well-known locally for his fundraising, and even put chocolate on cops’ cars to say thank you for their work during lockdown[/caption]