Friday 21 October 2016

‘I lay pretending to be dead as gunman shot my husband’

Cheryl Mellor
Cheryl Mellor

A wounded holidaymaker played dead to avoid being finished off by the Tunisia massacre gunman, after she had seen her husband shot down beside her.

Cheryl and Stephen Mellor huddled under a sun lounger before they were spotted by Seifeddine Rezgui as he prowled the grounds of the Imperial Marhaba Hotel.

Mrs Mellor was badly hurt and lay beside her critically injured husband, who she fears did not survive, for 20 minutes waiting for help to arrive.

She said she wishes she had been killed because it would have been “easier”.

Mrs Mellor (55) said helpers at the scene had been unable to find a pulse on her husband and she fears he is now dead, but has not received confirmation.

“I wish I had gone as well. It would have been so much easier. He’s gone and I’m still here,” she said.

The couple from Bodmin in the UK were doing crosswords on their sun loungers when the attack began.

“There was a bang, like an explosion, then we heard the gunshots,” she said while being treated in the Sahloul hospital in Sousse. “Steve said ‘quick get down’. We lay under the sun lounger together saying ‘I love you, I love you, I love you’.

“Then I saw him. He pointed the gun at me and he shot me twice, once in the leg, once in the hand. I thought ‘this is it, I’m going to die’.

“Then Steve said ‘We’ve got to go, we’ve got to run’. That’s when he was shot. I just lay there pretending to be dead.

“There was lots of screaming and panicking going on, I kept hearing gunshots closer then further away.”

When the shooting ended another hotel guest tended her wounds, but was unable to find signs of life in her husband.

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