(Rebecca Fishbein) A Queens man who suffered from cancer died last night after a homemade firework exploded in his mouth, and authorities say he took his own life.

Cops say they found 70-year-old Alfred Mayo at around 6:30 p.m. yesterday in his Kew Gardens apartment near Lefferts Boulevard; according to authorities, a homemade explosive device had detonated inside Mayo's mouth, blowing off part of his head. Paramedics say he was found in cardiac arrest and died at the scene.

Friends told reporters that Mayo was a former U.S. Marine who suffered from throat cancer. "He had cancer, and, after an operation on his neck, he had paralysis,” a source told the Daily News. “He had trouble swallowing. He was in pain. Al got tired of it all." Mayo had also reportedly lost part of his leg in a motorcycle accident about 40 years ago, and used crutches. "“Al was a very proud guy,” friend Sabri Dani told the Daily News. “He was the kindest man you ever met."

Read More: Gothamist

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