Chicago 'Walking Man' Lit On Fire

By Logan DeLoye

May 25, 2022

Senior man walking by the riverside
Photo: Getty Images

If you are native to downtown Chicago, then you have likely seen the "walking man" around town. For those who haven't, the walking man is a 75-year-old man named Joseph Kromelis who simply enjoys spending his time roaming the streets. According to the Chicago Tribune, Kromelis has stated on multiple occasion that he prefers a nomadic lifestyle.

Last night as he was resting along the sidewalk of lower Wabash Avenue, a stranger came by and doused him in flammable liquids. The stranger lit Kromelis' body on fire and ran away before officials were contacted.

A security guard working nearby saw Kromelis on fire and ran over with an extinguisher. He put out the flames and called paramedics immediately. The paramedics took Kromelis to Northwestern Memorial Hospital where they discovered half of his body to be burned.

The Chicago Tribune mentioned that this not the first time the walking man has been a victim of assault. In 2016, he was beaten with a baseball bat. When this incident occurred, locals raised over $33,000 to help pay for his medical bills.

If the suspect is caught, they will be charged with aggravated battery and assault. Kromelis remans in critical condition at the hospital as the investigation continues.

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