Heroes who stopped armed terrorist on train: 'He seemed like he was ready to fight to the end. So were we'
Published 23/08/2015 | 19:07
A US airman has recalled how he was awakened from a nap to help subdue a gunman on a high-speed train between the Netherlands and France.
Spencer Stone said he woke up to find a man holding an assault rifle that "looked like it was jammed and it wasn't working".
In his first remarks since Friday's attack on an Amsterdam-to-Paris train, Mr Stone recounted how he and his friends tackled the gunman before choking him unconscious.
He was speaking at a live news conference at the US ambassador's residence in Paris along with Anthony Sadler and National Guardsman Alek Skarlatos.
Mr Stone, wearing a sling on his left arm, was injured in the attack and said he will receive further medical treatment in Germany.
Mr Stone added: "He seemed like he was ready to fight to the end. So were we."
He is hailed not only for being the first to grapple with the attacker but for helping to stop the bleeding of a French-American passenger wounded by a bullet.
Mr Stone said the attacker kept pulling out weapons from his bag and that he was stabbed in the neck and sliced on his hand.
He said his thumb was reattached during his hospital stay in Lille and he thanked the French doctors, police officers and others.
Mr Skarlatos said military training played a part in subduing the gunman.
"In the beginning it was mostly gut instinct, survival," he said. "Our training kicked in after the struggle."
US Ambassador Jane Hartley praised the three Americans, calling them heroes.
"We often use the word hero and in this case I know that word has never been more appropriate," she said.
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