- The Washington Times - Thursday, June 9, 2016

A Virginia resident died Wednesday after being stabbed in the chest by an umbrella while she celebrated her birthday by the Atlantic Ocean.

Lottie Michelle Belk, 55, was identified by police Wednesday evening as the victim of a bizarre accident that unfolded after a beach umbrella was made airborne by a gust of wind.

Authorities received a emergency phone call just after 5 p.m. earlier that afternoon regarding a woman believed to be in cardiac arrest, Virginia Beach police spokesman Officer Patrick Kane told a local NBC News affiliate.

Medics arrived soon after at the scene of the accident and transported the woman to a nearby hospital where she later succumbed to her injury.

An investigation later led authorities to determine that the woman had been struck in the chest after an umbrella that had been anchored into the sand was propelled by a strong gust of wind.

Eyewitness Hugh Martin told Richmond’s WTVR News that he saw the umbrella go up in the air and then hit the woman, knocking her to the side.

“It was probably the most scariest things I’ve ever seen,” Mr. Martin said.

Wind speeds Wednesday afternoon reached upwards of 25 miles-per-hour, according to WAVY News.

Belk was a resident of nearby Chester, Va. and had been at the beach Wednesday celebrating both her birthday and anniversary, daughter Ashley Denton told Richmond’s WTVR.

Ms. Denton described her mother as a “loving lady” who leaves behind two daughters, a stepson, a stepdaughter and husband, the network reported.

A spokesperson for the Virginia Beach Police Department said there is no evidence of foul play, WTVR added.

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