Death of man who ran into Burning Man fire ruled suicide

RENO — The death of a 41-year-old man who ran into the flames during the burning of a towering wooden effigy at the Burning Man counterculture festival in Nevada in September has been ruled a suicide.

The Reno Gazette-Journal reported on its web site Friday that the Sacramento County Coroner’s Office in California officially ruled Aaron Mitchell’s death a suicide. The coroner listed his cause of death as cardiac arrest, bodily shock and third-degree burns over 97 percent of his body.

Mitchell died hours after he hurled past two layers of security and into the flames on Sept. 2 at the festival in the Black Rock Desert 90 miles north of Reno.

Mitchell was originally from McAlester, Oklahoma, but had been living in Switzerland with his wife, Ladina.

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