'Touchdown Jesus' struck down by lightning
Published 16/06/2010 | 05:00
A SIX-storey-tall statue of Jesus Christ with his arms raised along a highway was struck by lightning in a thunderstorm and burned to the ground.
The King of Kings statue, one of south-west Ohio's most familiar landmarks, had stood since 2004 at the evangelical Solid Rock Church along Interstate 75 in Monroe, just north of Cincinnati.
The sculpture, 62ft tall and 40ft wide at the base, was made of plastic foam and fibreglass over a steel frame, which is all that remains after the apparent act of God.
The 4,000-member, nondenominational church was founded by former horse trader Lawrence Bishop and his wife, who spent about $250,000 (€202,000) to finance the statue.
It was nicknamed 'Touchdown Jesus' because of the way the arms were raised -- similar to a referee signalling a touchdown in the game of American football.