The devastating terror attacks that took place in Paris on Friday will forever leave a scar on us all.
With over 120 people pronounced dead, there are thankfully still some survivors who are able to tell their stories – stories that not only help us understand and heal, but will help to prevent similar incidents from happening in the future.
A Facebook post from one of the survivors of the shooting and hostage situation at the Bataclan concert hall spoke about the gruesome situation.
Isobel Bowdery, a South African woman living in Paris, wrote, “You never think it will happen to you. It was just a Friday night at a rock show. The atmosphere was so happy and everyone was dancing and smiling. And then when the men came through the front entrance and began the shooting, we naively believed it was all part of the show. It wasn’t just a terrorist attack, it was a massacre.”
Italian businessman Massimiliano Natalucchi also survived the shooting at the Bataclan concert hall. “The first thing we did was to lie on the floor, and slowly, slowly start crawling,” he said.
“We were trying to reach a door we’d seen in front of us, about 10 metres away. But it was difficult because the terrorists had been shooting for about 15 or 20 minutes non-stop at the beginning,” Natalucchi revealed. He added that the gunmen were not worried they’d be identified, telling a European news station, “They were not wearing balaclavas. I thought I was going to die because I had so many people dead next to me. I could see their faces properly, especially one of three, I remember very well his face.”
Mariesha Payne of Scotland is another survivor who was at the Bataclan concert hall on Friday. She gave her account of the incident to Sky News, stating that she automatically knew they were under attack.
Khaled Saadi, a restaurant host at La Belle Equipe, revealed that he lost two sisters during the attack after gunmen opened fire at the Paris cafe where he works and his sister was celebrating her birthday.
Julien Pierce, a radio reporter, told CNN that he saw two terrorists enter the Bataclan Theater “very calm, very determined and firing randomly.”
The gruesome accounts come just a day after news that a California State University student named Nohemi Gonzalez was slain during the tragedy.
We pray for Paris.