Relatives proud of 3 Americans who subdued gunman on train

Downing Street said the Prime Minister had praised them for their bravery.


Sadler said that even through Stone was injured in the scuffle, he went to aid an injured passenger.

Norman, 62, said he thought the suspect’s gun may have jammed, preventing more bloodshed.

Norman described how a man identified by the U.S. military as Air Force Airman 1st Class Spencer Stone overpowered the suspect and put him in a neck lock while his friend, identified as Oregon National Guardsman Alek Skarlatos, took the man’s gun.

Stone, Skarlatos and Sadler were traveling together when they heard shattering glass and saw people running, Skarlatos’ brother Peter said.

“Alek said to Spencer, ‘Go get him, ‘ Norman said. Give me back my gun!’ But we just carried on beating him up and immobilised him and that was it”.

Three childhood friends from the Sacramento area on a European vacation sprung into action when a gunman attacked on board a high speed train to Paris.

“He had a Kalashnikov, he had a magazine full…” “Let’s go, go!” he shouted. “I’d rather die being active trying to get him down than simply sit in the corner and die”.

Among the other heroes of the night-time drama was a Frenchman on his way to the toilet who was first to tackle the assailant as he entered the carriage, and a 62-year-old Briton who still had blood spattered over his shirt as he spoke to journalists on Friday night.

“Specialist Alek Skarlatos is the pride of Oregon”, Brown said.

Sacramento State says the 23-year-old Sadler is a senior at the school and is majoring in kinesiology.

“We are shocked, but we are alive, and that’s the point”, Anglade said. “Yes, we saw ourselves dying because we were prisoners in this train and it was impossible to escape the nightmare”.

El-Khazzani had been on government officials’ radar before Friday’s attack.

Stone was severely cut in the neck and hand by the suspect but was released from a hospital Saturday.

Mr Stone was taken to hospital along with another unnamed American passenger, who was hit in the shoulder with a bullet. “Without his help, he would have died”, Sadler said.

Due to their acts of heroism, President Barack Obama called the three American heroes on Saturday to commend them on their courage and for potentially stopping a larger terrorist attack in Paris. Anglade said he had felt certain he, his two children and family were doomed to death in the train. “He leaves here a young man on an excursion to broaden his world view and to have fun with his buddies, and he comes back France’s national hero”, Sadler said.

Officers from France’s special anti-terror police are leading the investigation, the Paris prosecutor’s office said.

Spanish police reportedly warned French authorities that El-Kahzzani was a “very radical and dangerous” man.

Spanish intelligence said he had lived in the country for the last seven years and left them to travel to Syria, where terrorist groups operate and recruit members. He was in serious but stable condition, authorities said. Officials told NBC News that Stone underwent successful hand operation, and along with the other Americans, will be hosted by French President Francois Hollande for a meeting Monday.

The Spaniards responded on May 21 saying he no longer lived in Spain but in Belgium, according to the French official. The French then advised Belgium, according to the official close to the investigation, but it wasn’t clear what, if any, action was taken after that. The suspect boarded the train in Belgium, Thalys said.


French authorities have been on heightened alert since Islamic extremists attacked satirical newspaper Charlie Hebdo in January, which left 20 people dead including the three attackers.

Five who foiled an attack on a European train