Jason Cleary endured second-degree burns on his chin, chest, and stomach after his friend sprayed nail polish remover on him and lit him on fire. Cleary and his friend, Bryce, got the inspiration for this stunt from the "Fire Challenge" that has become popular on YouTube and other social media platforms. During an interview with the local NBC affiliate, Jason explained that he and his friend lit him on fire twice. The first time they created a small flame that they were able to extinguish. Yet, the second attempt got out of hand. "The second time, it [flared up] and they kept spraying it on me," Jason said.
Cleary's mother, Tabitha, became aware of the incident once she heard the boys screaming. When she went outside, she saw Bryce bringing a burned Jason down the street on his bicycle. "So we came running out. That's when we saw his friend Bryce riding him on the bike with no shirt on," Tabitha explained. "I start to freak out. 'Take him to the hospital, take him to the hospital.' I'm crying. He's crying." Cleary is not the first child to fall victim to this challenge. In Oct of 2018, a Detroit girl was hospitalized after trying to attempt the same stunt. As a result, Tabitha has made it her mission to speak out against these dangerous viral fads.
"I just want everybody to know that these challenges, or whatever they’re watching on YouTube, is not worth risking your life," Tabitha said. "I mean, my son got burned second-degree, and it could’ve been way worse." Jason spent four days in the Children’s Hospital of Michigan before reportedly returning home.