Leaf Burning Death

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A Winnebago County man died Friday morning after accidentally setting himself on fire while burning leaves. Eighty-two-year-old Godfrey Wenger inhaled the smoke and passed out, falling into the burning pile.

Winnebago County Sheriff's department says Wenger had a history of medical conditions and for many, burning leaves can be a hazard. Godfrey Wenger fainted after inhaling smoke from a pile of burning leaves. Godfrey was flown to a hospital in Madison with burns over sixty percent of his body. Winnebago County Sheriff's department says they've had close calls in the past with bonfires but this is a rare fatal death from leaf burning.

While Godfrey had a history of medical problems, Winnebago County says this unfortunate death serves as a reminder. They say those with medical problems need to be careful around burning leaves. This death has been ruled accidental.