SANFORD, N.C. (WNCN) — A father of two with a baby on the way died from a lightning strike in Sanford on Tuesday evening.

The incident happened around 6:35 p.m. in Sanford, according to the Lee County Emergency Services Director.

A close friend said the victim, a man in his 40s, was walking to a nearby store when a strong storm came through. That friend said the victim took cover under a large tree on Vance and Crestview Street in Sanford when the lightning hit.

The man who died had two teenage children and a baby on the way, the friend said.

“I’ve know him for years (since) when he was in his teens… he was a really good young man and probably didn’t have an enemy I could tell you about,” the friend told CBS North Carolina. “He was a really good man. Sad to hear.”

According to NOAA and the National Weather Service, there have been six lightning deaths across the country this year and this is the first in North Carolina.