A man lit himself on fire Friday just outside the National Air and Space Museum on the National Mall, prompting a group of bystanders to put out the blaze with their shirts, witnesses said.
The man, who has not been identified, was taken by helicopter to an area hospital.
When D.C. resident Nicole Didyk approached the scene, she said she saw “flames on the Mall. … Not like shooting flames, but the grass was on fire.”
Didyk said she saw four or five men with their shirts off, using the clothing to beat out flames that were engulfing a man’s body. The men putting out the fire were passersby, she said, and one of them told her that the man had “saluted the Capitol and then lit himself on fire.” One of the men putting out the flames told Didyk that the man said thank you after the flames were extinguished.
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