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Lightning strikes the White House, killing 2, injuring 2

WASHINGTON –

Two people seriously injured in a lightning strike outside the White House have died, police said Friday. Two others remain hospitalized with life-threatening injuries.

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

Two other people, a man and a woman, are in critical condition, the police department said. Their identities were not immediately revealed.

Authorities did not disclose how people were injured, other than saying they were seriously injured in the lightning strike.

“We are deeply saddened by the loss of life following the lightning strike in Lafayette Park,” White House press secretary Karine Jean-Pierre said. “Our hearts go out to the families who have lost loved ones, and we are praying for those still fighting for their lives.”

U.S. Secret Service and Park Police officials witnessed the lightning strike Thursday night and rushed to provide first aid, officials said.

Emergency medical personnel were called to the scene shortly before 7 p.m. and transported all victims to hospital with “critical, life-threatening injuries,” a fire department spokesman said. Vito Maggiolo said.

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