American Who Played Dead During Paris Attacks Also Survived 9/11 In NYC
A survivor of the Paris attacks reportedly also narrowly avoided death in New York 14 years prior.
On September 11, 2001, the now-36-year-old American known only as Matthew was near the entrance of the World Trade Center when the first of two planes struck the North Tower, Huffington Post reports.
Matthew, who had been on his way to a meeting for work, told France's Le Monde newspaper he then "sprinted across half of Manhattan" and spared himself from harm.
He would narrowly escape death once again at an Eagles of Death Metal concert in Paris, where he had moved with his wife and two children last July.
Matthew was shot in the leg as he ran toward the exit after hearing gunshots at the Bataclan.
He played dead but dragged himself closer to the exit each time the gunmen reloaded despite having multiple bodies lying on top of him.
He reportedly said,
I inched forward centimeter by centimeter. At one point, I saw the ledge of the exit at arm's reach. I was able to grip it with one finger, then the other.
The Telegraph reports Matthew continued to play dead after getting outside and didn't raise his head when his arms were grabbed.
Two men, one of whom was Le Monde journalist Daniel Psenny, began to drag Matthew toward Psenny's apartment.
Psenny was shot in the arm as he slammed the door to his building.
According to The Telegraph, he told Le Monde,
I didn't think, I acted instinctively. I had the human reflex not to let someone die in front of me, but it was the circumstances that allowed it. If I had been under machine gun fire, I no doubt wouldn't have come to get Matthew.
Neighbors desperately tended to the wounds of Matthew and the journalist as they lost blood at an alarming rate.
Matthew remained in shock at Psenny's flat until two hours later when he remembered to call his wife, who would have joined him at the Bataclan had they found a babysitter.
Another hour had passed before Matthew and Psenny were taken to the hospital.
The two saw each other at the hospital several days later and since promised to split "probably [an] entire bottle" of wine when they fully recover.