Katherine Diaz, an Olympic surfing hopeful, was killed by lightning while training.
On March 19, the promising surfing star Katherine Diaz lost her life after being struck by lightning. The tragic accident happened while the 22-year-old was training near her home in El Tunco, as UNILADÂ reports.
Devastatingly, although emergency services arrived almost immediately after the incident and tried to revive Diaz, she passed away on the beach.
The Spanish media AS revealed that the drastic change in the weather was completely unexpected. They stated:
âThe sky was clear and it was an unforeseen storm that did not seem to carry much electrical intensity either.â
According to The Guardian, the young surfer had been preparing for the International Surfing Association World Surf Games in El Salvador this May. Moreover, at the contest, she would have competed for a place in the upcoming Tokyo Olympics.
Members of the surfing community and others who followed Katherineâs career paid tribute to the Olympic hopeful.
In a heart-tearing social mediaÂ statement, ISA wrote:
âWe send our heartfelt condolences to Katherineâs family, the surfers of El Salvador, and to all those in the international surfing community whose lives she touched.
We will never forget you.â
The 22-year-old was struck by lightning as she prepared for a tournament which could have earned her a Tokyo Olympics spot.
— BBC Sport (@BBCSport) March 22, 2021
Additionally, the Salvadoran Surf Federation also addressed Diazâs tragic death:
âA great athlete who has represented our country has left us.
See you soon, great warrior. El Salvador is in mourning.â
Central American Art tweeted:
âSo sad to share the news of Salvadoran surfer, Katherine Diazâs passing. She was one of El Salvadorâs most popular surf athletes with large recognition for popularising womenâs surfing in El Salvador.
Her surfing legacy started when she was a child in her home in La Libertad, where she would compete in local surf competitions and started gaining recognition by winning competitions and later becoming the first woman in El Salvadorâs national surf team to go on to represent.â
So sad to share the news of Salvadoran surfer, Katherine Diazâs, @katherinecook7, passing. She was one of El Salvadorâs most popular surf athletes with large recognition for popularizing womenâs surfing in El Salvador… pic.twitter.com/MKHPmvCNgY
— Central American Art (@CentAm_Beauty) March 20, 2021
Furthermore, Morena Valdez, El Salvadorâs minister of tourism, wrote:
âYou will always be present in the surfing history of El Salvador. Your waves will always remember you in this paradise. Rest in peace Katherine Diaz.â
Siempre estarĂĄs presente en la historia del surf de #ElSalvador. Tus olas siempre te recordarĂĄn en este paraĂso. Descansa en paz Katherine DĂaz.
Fuerza a âEl Bambaâ y a toda la familia. đđ» pic.twitter.com/D2F9cd7a6O
— Morena Valdez (@MorenaValdezSV) March 20, 2021
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