A man's plan to propose to his girlfriend on a mountain in the US ended in tragedy when the pair were struck by lightning. Richard Butler and his girlfriend, Bethany Lott, both from Knoxville, Tennessee, were hit as they hiked in the North Carolina mountains. Lott was killed, while Butler suffered third degree burns.
Butler, 30, had driven Lott, his partner of a year, to Max Patch Bald, near Asheville, saying they would be going for a stroll. He had planned to present her with an engagement ring at the top of the mountain. When they reached the peak, lightning struck three times, with the third strike hitting the couple .
"She didn't say anything, and I turned around and she was lying a few feet away, and I crawled to her," Butler said. "I did CPR for probably 15 minutes and the whole time was trying her cell phone, but I couldn't get anything out."
Butler said he had not initially realised that he had been hit. "I was spun 180 degrees and thrown several feet back," he said. "My legs turned to Jello, my shoes were smoking and the bottom of my feet felt like they were on fire." Butler's mother, Janet Delaney, said Lott loved the mountains. "She hiked thousands of miles and spent a couple of years in Utah, just hiking. Her last words were: 'Look at how beautiful it is.'"