Rancher and 34 Cattle Killed by Single Lightning Strike

FORT COLLINS, Colo. — A Colorado rancher and 34 of his cattle were killed by a lightning strike in a devastating incident on Saturday, May 25. Rancher Mike Morgan, 51, lost his life while feeding his herd from a trailer in an open pasture about 80 miles northwest of Denver, according to the Jackson County Sheriff’s Office. The incident occurred during a severe thunderstorm that swept through the area.

Jackson County Coroner George Crocket explained that around 100 cattle had surrounded the trailer at the time of the lightning strike, and it appears that the bolt hit Morgan while he was on the trailer. Crocket stated, “The cattle were bunched up around the trailer and it hit them all.” Emergency services were immediately called to the scene, but despite their efforts, Morgan was pronounced dead at the scene.

Morgan’s family, who were nearby during the horrific event, survived. His father-in-law was driving the truck attached to the trailer where Morgan was located, while his wife was nearby. The incident has left the community devastated, as Morgan was not only a dedicated rancher but also a board member of the North Park Stockgrowers Association. Known for his passionate advocacy for the ranching industry, Morgan had previously spoken about the need to raise awareness about their way of life and the challenges they face.

The National Weather Service had issued reports of an impending storm in the Denver area on the day of the incident, urging residents to seek shelter. Unfortunately, the lightning strike still took a tragic toll on Morgan and his cattle.

This unfortunate incident serves as a stark reminder of the dangers posed by severe weather conditions. Lightning strikes are unpredictable and can be deadly. As Coloradans mourn the loss of Mike Morgan and his cattle, it is important to remain vigilant during storms and follow safety guidelines to protect ourselves and our loved ones.