NC man catches fire, dies after pouring gasoline on fire

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Police tape (Stock)

LAWNDALE, N.C. — A North Carolina man was immersed in flames and killed after he threw gasoline on a burning pile of debris.

William Dennis Thornton, 61, was using gas to burn trash and debris Thursday morning when he caught on fire, the Shelby Star reports. He was pronounced dead at the scene.

“He threw an accelerant on the fire and just wasn’t able to get out of the away fast enough,” said Cleveland County Sheriff’s Sgt. D. Bryson. “It was a tragic accident.”

Family members believe Thornton was trying to reignite a pile of limbs and it blew back on him.

“He was the glue that held this family together,” said Thornton’s son-in-law Douglas Mullins.

The investigation is ongoing.

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