Former bricklayer Stephen Jones has recently been praised for his heroic work in the gruesome aftermath of the suicide attack at Manchester Arena.
When suicide bomber Salman Abedi detonated his device, he killed twenty-two people, including families and young children. Injuring many more, it was Jones’ instinct to rush into the arena and help as many people as he could.
Stephen Jones has been homeless for around a year and was sleeping rough near the arena when the incident took place. He described that it was “just instinct” to go in and help as many people as he could. Initially though, he thought that the loud bang he had heard was a firework.
He described, “I then realised what was happening and saw children coming out, screaming and covered in blood,” he revealed to ITV news.
“It was a lot of children with blood all over them, crying and screaming.”
“We were having to pull nails out of their arms and a couple out of this little girl’s face.”
“We haven’t slept most of the night because of what we’ve seen.”
He continued: “just because I’m homeless, it doesn’t mean I haven’t got a heart.”
“There’s a lot of good people with Manchester who help us out and we need to give back too.”
“I wouldn’t have been able to live with myself if I’d just walked away.”
Another homeless hero, Chris Parker also commendably rushed into the arena to help those that had been injured. He described the scene in the foyer of the arena, where he was begging for any spare change. “Everyone was piling out, all happy and everything else.”
“As people were coming out of the glass doors I heard a bang and within a split second I saw a white flash, then smoke and then I heard screaming.”
“It knocked me to the floor and then I got up and instead of running away my gut instinct was to run back and try and help.”
“There was people lying on the floor everywhere.”
“I saw a little girl… she had no legs.”
Wrapping the child in a merchandise t-shirt, he provided invaluable comfort for those that were injured in their time of need. He described another incident involving a woman in her sixties who had been attending the concert with her family. He described: “she passed away in my arms.”
“I haven’t stopped crying.”