UNF grad reflects on viral hurricane sensation

Image+by+Brittany+Moore

Image by Brittany Moore

Tierney Harvey

Video by Brittany Moore

While most people were taking shelter from Hurricane Matthew, one UNF graduate headbanged to a Slayer song in the middle of the storm. The nine-second video went viral, and by now most Ospreys have probably seen it.

Lane Pittman, the man whose long ginger locks are seen blowing in the wind in the video, said he never expected the overwhelming response.

“The hurricane video was a spur of the moment release of aggression towards Hurricane Matthew,” Pittman said. “I had to teach my dad how to do Snapchat to record me doing it.”

The video received millions of views and was shared by the likes of Tosh.0, Foo Fighters and Slayer.

“I went from thinking my house was going to be under nine to twelve feet of storm surge to viral within the same hour. It was really crazy how quick it took off,” Pittman said.

He said he decided to post the video on Facebook because he thought some friends would think it was funny.

“Within fifteen minutes, my phone was melting down because so many people were blowing it up.”

Pittman graduated from UNF with a degree in communications in 2015.

“I came over from FSCJ after doing my AA over there, and started swoopin’ it up, livin’ that swoop life,” Pittman said.

While at UNF, he played lacrosse, intramural sports and played guitar for one of the campus ministries. He is now an alternate for UNF’s Ozzie Osprey mascot. Pittman said that allows him to come back to UNF to play intramural sports.

“Easily the best part of my college experience was balling out, winning championships with all my friends,” Pittman said. “Now, I’m one of the many Ozzie Ospreys.”

Now, Pittman works full-time as a guitar teacher at Fletcher Middle School. He also works at Al’s Pizza.

This isn’t the first time Pittman has made the news. He received media attention in 2015 after his Fourth of July arrest for playing the national anthem on guitar on a Neptune Beach sidewalk.

“I believe everything happens for a reason, and I feel like these two stories are a testament to it – the Fourth of July thing and the hurricane video,” Pittman said. “I never thought anything would come of those.”

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