Lightning kills two next to White House

A husband and wife celebrating more than five decades of marriage have been killed in a lightning strike outside the White House.

Two others remained hospitalised with life-threatening injuries.

James Mueller, 76, and Donna Mueller, 75, of Janesville, Wisconsin, died of their injuries after the lightning strike in Lafayette Park, located directly outside the White House complex, the Metropolitan Police Department said.


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The two other people, a man and a woman, were in critical condition after Thursday night’s lightning strike, the police department said.

Their identities were not immediately released.

Authorities did not reveal how the people were injured, other than to say they were critically hurt in the lightning strike.

The Muellers were on a trip to Washington DC to celebrate their 56th wedding anniversary, according to their niece Michelle McNett.

Officers with the Secret Service and the US Park Police witnessed the lightning strike on Thursday night and ran over to render first aid, officials said.

Emergency medical crews were called to the scene just before 7pm and had transported all of the victims to the hospital with “critical, life-threatening injures,” fire department spokesman Vito Maggiolo said.

© AP 2022