‘He Was Ready to Fight to the End. So Were We’: Americans Recount French Train Attack

This is an archived article and the information in the article may be outdated. Please look at the time stamp on the story to see when it was last updated.

Anthony Sadler (L), Spencer Stone (2nd L), Alek Skarlatos (R) and US ambassador to France Jane Hartley (2nd R) pose after a press conference at the US embassy in Paris on August 23, 2015, two days after 25-year-old Moroccan Ayoub El-Khazzani opened fire on a Thalys train travelling from Amsterdam to Paris, injuring two people before being tackled by several passengers including off-duty American servicemen. (Credit: THOMAS SAMSON/AFP/Getty Images)

“He seemed like he was ready to fight to the end. So were we.”

Spencer Stone, the U.S. serviceman who was the first American to tackle a gunman aboard a Paris-bound train, spoke to reporters for the first time Sunday and described a fierce struggle that neutralized the attacker but left Stone with injuries requiring surgery, including a nearly severed thumb.

After being awakened by the sound of a gunshot in their railway carriage Friday afternoon, Stone and his friends, Alek Skarlatos and Anthony Sadler, looked up and saw an assailant at the end of the car holding an AK-47.

“It looked like it was jammed or it wasn’t working, and he was trying to charge the weapon,” Stone, a U.S. airman from Carmichael, Calif., told reporters gathered at the U.S. embassy in Paris. “Alek just hit me on the shoulder and said ‘Let’s go.’”

Click here to read the full story on LATimes.com.