Prayer Vigil Held for Venice Beach Lightning Strike Victim, Nick Fagnano

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Friends and relatives of Nick Fagnano gathered in North Hollywood on Tuesday evening to remember the young man who died as a result of a lightning strike in Venice Beach last weekend.

The 20-year-old was believed to be swimming or surfing when he was hit by lightning near the 3500 block of South Ocean Front Walk (map) Sunday afternoon.

"His smile was infectious; his personality was incomparable," said friend, Matt Cohen. "He's just the nicest person anybody will ever meet."

The vigil at St. Charles Borromeo was organized by two friends who were with Fagnano at the beach when the accident occurred.

"Nick just went in the water," friend Alex Zamora said. "Me and Brett were out by the volleyball courts and we hear this big loud bang.''

That "bang" was followed by a lightning strike.

Fagnano was in the water for almost an hour before a lifeguard found him.

He was taken to a Marina del Rey hospital, where he was pronounced dead.

The Notre Dame High School graduate was slated to begin classes next month as a junior at USC after transferring from Santa Barbara City College.