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Lightning Strike At Venice Beach Killed Incoming USC Student

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A 20-year-old student who would have started school at USC soon was killed when a rare lightning storm hit Venice Beach on Sunday.

Nick Fagnano was hanging out with his friends on the beach when he decided to dip in the water for a moment to rinse off, and that's when lightning struck.

"There was so much commotion when the lightning struck on the beach, he was not one of those recovered in the first response,” his mother Mary Fagnano told L.A. Daily News. “His friends were looking frantically for him, couldn’t find him. Half an hour after lightning struck, his body was found about 50 feet out."

KTLA reported that Fagnano was taken to a Marina del Rey hospital, where he died.

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His parents said that the Sherman Oak's Notre Dame High School graduate had attended Santa Barbara City College and Santa Monica City College, and was about to attend USC as a junior to study urban development.

In the last few months before his death, Fagnano tweeted about how excited he was about attending USC, and also about working at the ACE Hotel downtown:

Fagnano's friends tweeted about him being a "sweet guy with a big heart" and being "so nice."

His mother said that he was "the best child a parent could ever had hoped for." He was their only child and lived with his parents downtown. He also played basketball for four years at his high school.

Seven other people were injured in the same lightning strike at Venice Beach, with one in critical condition. This was the chaotic scene at the beach:

A 57-year-old man was struck by lightning in Catalina on Sunday; however, he was later released from the hospital, according to KTLA.

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