Boy, does this bring back memories. I spent 20 years as an enlisted aircrewman on Navy P-3C Orions. Flying through a storm really gets your attention. St. Elmo’s Fire is fun to watch as long as it stays outside the airplane. I watched one time as a huge ball of sparks formed just behind the flight engineer’s seat in the cockpit then when it was about the size of a basketball, it started drifting down the passageway in the aircraft. It went right through my buddy Skeeter who was unfortunate enough to be standing in the aisle. Think of it as sticking your tongue inside a light socket then multiply by a factor of 10! Knocked Skeeter for a loop and left him gasping on the deck.
As someone else mentioned, when you get into weather like that, your just along for the ride.
Bravo Zulu to the AF pilots and boom operator for laughing in the face of danger. It’w why they pay us the big bucks, LOL.