pensioner came face to face with Tunisia gunman
Highbridge pensioner has spoken about the moment he came face
to face with a gunman during the Tunisian terrorist attack in
which 38 holidaymakers died.
Hawkes, a former Gurkha who served 22 years in the army, risked
his own life when he ran towards the gunfire to see how he could
help those being shot.
was on a holiday booked by his wife as a 70th birthday present
when the terrorist incident unfolded around him.
Hawkes told ITV News: "All of a sudden there was three or
four very loud bangs. I recognised these bangs as gunshots straight
away, having experienced it many, many times during my army service.
I looked down across the pool and I could see people running towards
then got up and started to run. I grabbed hold of my wife and
we both took cover behind a wall."
looked round and saw a man with an AK47 rifle slung across the
front of his body. He wasn't actually looking at me, he was looking
down at a phone that he had in his hand. Someone shouted that
he was another gunman."
was an injured person just to our right and we were talking to
him, telling him to keep quiet and not to move."
there was another loud bang and he'd fired a shot in the reception
area. We were just so, so lucky. The bullets came in our direction.
I know that because we were immediately below the glass doors."
looked down to my left and I saw there was a man with his head
in his hands who was sobbing. He told me he had just lost his
wife. He said they just shot her through the neck and what could
I do? I just had to console him. That's all I could do."
then went down to the swimming pool and picked up some towels
and began to cover the bodies."
A national minute's silence will be held to remember victims of
the Tunisian beach attack this Friday (3rd July) at mid-day, a
week after the shooting which killed 38 people.