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ONLY ON 3: Fisherman killed by lightning on NE Cape Fear River

WILMINGTON, NC (WWAY) — A Castle Hayne man is dead after being struck by lightning while fishing on the Northeast Cape Fear River. Now his friends and family are remembering him.

He was known by his friends as “The Catfish King of the Northeast Cape Fear River.” Sunday, Timothy “Timbo” Godwin, 50, died doing what he loved.

“if he wasn’t working, we were here,” Godwin’s fiancée Brooke said. “I should have been here Sunday, but I didn’t want to come. I tried to get him to stay in bed with me, matter of fact, and he was like, ‘No, gotta catch that catfish.'”

Godwin was a well known fisherman in Castle Hayne. His friends say he caught the biggest catfish they’d ever seen.

Godwin’s best friend and fishing buddy George Caison spent many hours on the dock on the river. Caison was with Godwin Sunday.

“It started to sprinkle, so I went to the truck, and he said he was going to get his raincoat,” Caison said. “I sat down in the truck and heard one lightning bolt. It was real loud. I jumped about a foot. When I got out of the van about five minutes later, I found him laying on the ground.”

Godwin was struck by lightning through a tree and electrocuted. His fiancée says she is lost without her other half, but she finds comfort in knowing that Godwin helped save others.

“It was a tragedy; a big one, ’cause I know his mama taught him to get in out of the rain, but he was a donor,” Brooke said. “We decided for him to be a donor, and he did save lives. He was able to give his liver, his kidneys and his heart.”

A memorial service for Godwin is tomorrow at 6 p.m. at Coble Ward-Smith Funeral Home in Wilmington.

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