July 19, 2002:

On this night, the storms fired quickly and moved on in become severe along the way.  Cristal and I drove to Chicks Beach along Shore Drive in the northern part of Virginia Beach to meet up with Bill who was setting up under the northbound lane of the Chesapeake Bay Bridge.  From here we had open sky to the north, west and east.  The bolts started flying soon after we reached the beach.  The light show we would see would become the best of the year and probably the best of my early lightning photography career.  The rain held off for a little while allowing us to get some very crisp, clean, close shots.  We would find out later the next day that a bolt on this night hit a church close to where we were setting it on fire and destroying it.  We also learned that friend and fellow H.I.R.T. member Chuck Rippel's house was struck in southern Chesapeake.  It hit his 100 foot HAM radio tower in his backyard and traveled through the cables into the house and his garage.  It did significant damage but luckily no one was hurt.  Camera and film:  Minolta x370s and Fuji Sensia slide film 100 ISO.


All Images Copyright Jesse V. Bass III and
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