Katherine Diaz, a 22-year-old surfer, has been struck dead by lightning during a training session in El Tunco, El Salvador. Diaz was reported dead on 19 March 2020 and the International Surfing Association confirmed it the next day.
In a Facebook post, the body sympathised with the family and community of the young surfer. “Katherine embodied the joy and energy that make surfing so special and dear to us all, as a global ambassador of the sport,” the ISA’s statement read.
Diaz had already impressed the surfing community with her excellent performances at both the ISA World Surfing Games and ISA World Junior Surfing Championship. She was reportedly preparing for the May 2021 ISA World Surfing Games—a qualifier for this year’s Summer Olympics in Tokyo before the tragic incidence.
The Salvadoran Surf Federation described it as some sort of freak accident, “the sky was clear and it was an unforeseen storm that did not seem to carry much electrical intensity either,” it said according to AS.com.