Man says Monday marked 3rd time he's been hit by lightning

CHARLOTTE, N.C. — Monday night's severe weather sent one man to the hospital after he was struck by lightning.

Few people can say they've been struck by lightning, but Bob Edwards is one of them.

Edwards is, in one respect, very lucky. After all, he is alive.

He was leaving the Steele Creek Cafe on Westinghouse Boulevard, walking to his truck as Monday's severe weather rolled in.

"There was a tremendous purple flash and it felt like somebody hit me in the chest with a hammer," Edwards said.

He said he blacked out and when he came to, crawled to the door of the restaurant desperate for help.

"A little girl inside there seen me and told her father and he came out and did what he could for me," Edwards said.

He was rushed to the hospital and released Monday night.

While he's lucky to be alive, he is unlucky if you consider this is the third time it's happened to him.

In 1997, he said, he was struck by lightning along the same road. He said in that instance, rescuers had to revive him three times.

Edwards was also struck in 2009 in York, S.C.

On Tuesday, he said he is still feeling the physical effects from Monday night.

"I still got a heavy ringing in my ears. My eyes won't focus and (there is) a metallic taste in my mouth," Edwards said.

But he said getting past the emotional part over the years has been the most difficult. He said because of the previous strikes, he has post-traumatic stress.

"It's just been an ongoing thing," he said. "It's a day-to-day thing and it's cost me a bunch of stuff due to the PTSD -- jobs, friends and, eventually, family."

Edwards said he does have some metallic items, such as screws, in his body. But he said doctors can't say for sure if that is a reason why it's happened to him so many times.