Roy Cleveland “Spark Ranger” Sullivan Sr.

Roy Cleveland “Spark Ranger” Sullivan Sr.

Greene County, Virginia, USA
Death 28 Sep 1983 (aged 71)
Augusta County, Virginia, USA
Burial Weyers Cave, Augusta County, Virginia, USA
Memorial ID 60163728 View Source

Roy C. Sullivan

Roy Cleveland Sullivan,71,died at his home yesterday morning.

He was born in Greene County on Feb.7,1912, a son of the late Arthur Cleveland and Ida Bell Shifflett Sullivan.

He was a member of Shenandoah Heights Baptist Church.He spent a 36-year career as a park ranger in Shenandoah National Park.

Survivors include his wife,Mrs.Patricia Ann Morris Sullivan ,three sons,one daughter,four brothers,three sisters;three grandchildren,three great-grandchildren and a number of nieces and nephews.

A funeral will be held 2 p.m. Saturday in the Waynesboro Chapel of Etter Funeral home,conducted by Dr.Donald W.Retzer and the Rev.Jon T Diefenthaler.Burial will be in Edgewood Cemetery in Grottoes.

The family will receive friends from 7 to 9 p.m. Friday in the funeral home.

News-Virginian- 9/29/1983

Roy was struck my lightening 7 times,he is listed in the Guinness Book of World records.Roy Cleveland Sullivan (February 7, 1912 – September 28, 1983) was a U.S. park ranger in Shenandoah National Park in Virginia. Sullivan was hit by lightning on seven different occasions and survived all of them. In his lifetime he gained "Human Lightning Rod" as a nickname. On September 28, 1983, Sullivan died at age 71, of a self-inflicted gunshot wound, reportedly distraught over an unrequited love. Two of his ranger hats are on display at two Guinness World Exhibit Halls in New York City and South Carolina. There is a road side plaque on Tanner's Ridge in Page County, Virginia that talks about Sullivan.

WAYNESBORO, Va (AP) - A retired park ranger described in the Guinness Book of World Records as the "lighting conductor of Virginia because he had been struck seven times, was found dead at his home of a gunshot would to the head, according to authorities. Police ordered an autopsy yesterday on Roy Cleveland Sullivan, 71, a spokesman for the Augusta County Sheriff's Department said. Sullivan, who had appeared on the television program, "That's incredible" because of his close encounters with lighting, was pronounced dead at Waynesboro Community Hospital about 9 a.m. Wednesday. Sullivan was a retired Shenandoah National Park Ranger, working there for 36 years beginning in 1940. Chief Park Ranger Larry Hakel said Sullivan was hit by lighting seven or eight times in that period, as well as once after he retired. Guiness said he had been struck by lighting seven times. The world records book said Sullivan lost a nail from his big toe to lighting in 1942, lost his eyebrows in 1969, had his left shoulder seared in 1970 and had his hair set on fire in 1972. As he was driving n August 7, 1973, "a bolt came out of a small, low-lying cloud, hit him on the head through his hat, set his hair on fire again, knocked him 10 feet out of his car, went through both legs and knocked his left shoes off," the book said "He had to pour a pail of water over hsi head to cool off." He was struck again in 1976 and 1977, it added.