Kansas Teacher Dies After Lightning Strike

By: Associated Press Email
By: Associated Press Email

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Thursday, September 15, 2011

An eastern Kansas high school teacher who was struck by lightning during a weekend bike ride has died.

Emporia High School brought in counselors Thursday to help students and staff cope with the death of Spanish teacher Patti Gilliam. She died Wednesday at a Topeka hospital.

The Coffey County sheriff's department said Gilliam was riding her bike on the John Redmond Reservoir dam on Saturday evening when she was hit by lightning. The sheriff's department said thundershowers were some distance away at the time Gilliam was hit.

Gilliam joined the Emporia High School faculty in 2006. Principal Scott Sheldon describes her as a great teacher who was well-liked by students and staff.

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