Man struck by lightning still recovering, two years later

PHOENIX (KSAZ) -- This monsoon season has packed a punch.

There's been damage, flooding and recently two teens were struck by lightning. One still recovering in the hospital.

Now, a lightning strike survivor is speaking out about his road to recovery, and how the accident changed his life.

FOX 10's Danielle Miller caught up with the man, Jaime Santana, about six months after the accident. He has come a long way with his recovery, but he still has a long way to go. The monsoon season brings back a lot of bad memories for the family, and they now do things a little differently when a storm rolls in.

"Before, we'd go outside with our phones and start recording. Kids would dance in the rain," said Santana's Sister, Sara Torres. "Now, as soon as we see it coming, everybody goes inside. We stay away from windows."

About two years ago, Santana and his family were out horseback riding. They were heading back home as a monsoon storm was rolling in.

"I just remember us riding back in, and I was told a storm was coming and that's it. I blacked out after that," said Santana.

Unfortunately, they didn't make it home quick enough. Santana and his horse were struck by lightning near Jackrabbit and Elliot in Rainbow Valley, just minutes from home. Since then, it's been a long road to recovery for Santana. He still cant walk, and he's lost his sense of taste. 

"I feel numb, completely numb in my hands. Both of my hands, my legs, they're numb. Like a tingling feeling," said Santana. "I can't taste it, you know. I could be eating chicken and I wouldn't know."

Although the road has been long, Santana and his family are just happy he's still here. 

"I'm thankful," said Santana. "I thank god everyday. Everyday for this that I'm alive, that I'm here."

The family tells us they still keep in contact with the man who performed life-saving CPR on Santana. That man was in the area and jumped in to help. 

Meanwhile, Santana said his next milestone to hit will be to walk again.

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