- Title: FRANCE-TRAIN/AWARD France to bestow Legion d'honneur on train shooting heroes
- Date: 24th August 2015
- Summary: PARIS, FRANCE (AUGUST 24, 2015) (REUTERS) EXTERIOR OF ELYSEE PALACE U.S. CITIZENS ALEK SKARLATOS, ANTHONY SADLER AND SPENCER STONE POSING FOR PHOTOGRAPHS AND ENTERING ELYSEE PALACE REPUBLICAN GUARD
- Embargoed: 8th September 2015 13:00
- Location: France
- Country: France
- Topics: General
- Reuters ID: LVAF02Y71IGAEGPEBDXVL5NFKIP5
- Aspect Ratio: 16:9
- Story Text: PLEASE NOTE: SHOTS 4-9 ARE AGENCY POOL
French President Francois Hollande on Monday (August 24) was to award France's highest honour, the Legion d'honneur, to three U.S. citizens and a Briton who helped disarm a machine gun-toting attacker on a train.
The four men, Spencer Stone, 23, student Anthony Sadler, also 23, National Guardsman Alek Skarlatos, 22, and Chris Norman, a 62-year-old British consultant who lives in France, will all be decorated during a ceremony held at the Elysee palace.
Belgian Prime Minister Charles Michel also attended the ceremony.
"We are gathered here to honour four people, four men who made it possible, thanks to their courage, to save lives, who gave an example of what can be done in dramatic circumstances," Hollande said before awarding the four men with the Legion d'honneur.
The three Americans, who grew up together near Sacramento, California, were touring Europe, partly to celebrate Skarlatos' return from a recent tour of duty in Afghanistan.
The trio said they had no choice but to react when they saw the gunman cocking his assault rifle. Stone said he choked him while Skarlatos hit him on the head with one of his firearms.
Stone's and Skarlatos' military training kicked in while they provided first aid and searched the train to make sure there were no other gunmen, they said.
They said the gunman was apparently untrained in firearms and that he could have used all his firepower to devastating effect if he had known more about weapons.
Skarlatos disputed a statement the gunman made, through a lawyer, that he just wanted to rob the train because he was hungry.
- Copyright Holder: REUTERS
- Copyright Notice: (c) Copyright Thomson Reuters 2015. Open For Restrictions - http://about.reuters.com/fulllegal.asp
- Usage Terms/Restrictions: None