x

Politics

Skarlatos, Two U.S. Friends, Get France’s Legion of Honor for Subduing Gunman

PARIS — Three Americans and a Briton who tackled an attacker bristling with guns and ammunition prevented carnage on the high-speed train carrying 500 passengers to Paris, France’s president said Aug. 24, presenting the men with the Legion of Honor and praised them as an example of the need for action when faced with terrorism.

President Francois Hollande said the two Americans who first tackled the gunman were soldiers, “but on Friday you were simply passengers. You behaved as soldiers but also as responsible men.”

Hollande then pinned the Legion of Honor medal on U.S. Airman Spencer Stone, National Guardsman Alek Skarlatos, and their longtime friend Anthony Sadler, who subdued the gunman as he moved through the train with an assault rifle strapped to his bare chest. The British businessman, Chris Norman, who also jumped into the fray, also received the medal.

The men showed “that faced with terror, we have the power to resist. You also gave a lesson in courage, in will, and thus in hope,” Hollande said.

The gunman, identified as 26-year-old Moroccan Ayoub El-Khazzani, is detained and being questioned by French counterterrorism police outside Paris.

El-Khezzani’s lawyer said her client doesn’t understand the suspicions of terrorism, media attention or even that a person was wounded. For him, there were no gunshots fired, Sophie David said.

The Americans, casual in vacation-style polo shirts and khakis against the backdrop of the highly formal Presidential palace, appeared slightly overwhelmed as they received France’s highest honor.

His arm in a sling, Stone, 23, has said he was coming out of a deep sleep when the gunman appeared.

Skarlatos, a 22-year-old National Guardsman recently back from Afghanistan, “just hit me on the shoulder and said ‘Let’s go.'”

With those words, Hollande said, a “veritable carnage” was avoided.

“Since Friday, the entire world admires your courage, your sangfroid, your spirit of solidarity. This is what allowed you to with bare hands — your bare hands — to subdue an armed man. This must be an example for all, and a source of inspiration,” Hollande said.

(SYLVIE CORBET)

 

 

 

RELATED

ATHENS - A regulation in an omnibus bill will allow repatriated Greeks from Albania and the former Soviet Union to receive full national pensions, Labor and Social Protection Minister Kostis Hatzidakis said during a discussion in Greek Parliament on Tuesday.

Top Stories

General News

FALMOUTH, MA – The police in Falmouth have identified the victim in an accident involving a car plunging into the ocean on February 20, NBC10 Boston reported.

General News

NEW YORK – Meropi Kyriacou, the new Principal of The Cathedral School in Manhattan, was honored as The National Herald’s Educator of the Year.

General News

PHILADELPHIA – The Federation of Hellenic Societies of Philadelphia and Greater Delaware Valley announced that the Evzones, the Presidential Guard of Greece will be participating in the Philadelphia Greek Independence Day Parade on March 20.

Enter your email address to subscribe

Provide your email address to subscribe. For e.g. abc@xyz.com

You may unsubscribe at any time using the link in our newsletter.