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Irish couple who survived Bataclan massacre say memorial gig 'too soon' for them

Katie Healy and David Nolan said they will go back to Paris together some day.

Image: Sky News

AN IRISH COUPLE who survived a terrorist attack at the Bataclan theatre in Paris three months ago have said they will not be attending the memorial concert on Tuesday.

Speaking to Sky News, Katie Healy and David Nolan said it is too soon for them to go back to Paris, and back to another concert there.

32-year-old Nolan was shot in the foot during the massacre and is still undergoing treatment. He lay over his fiancé to shield her from the gunfire and she said there is no doubt he saved her life that night.

“It still hasn’t sunk in what happened that night. The loss of life, the bloodshed, the violence … I’m not sure people will ever recover,” Nolan said.

“We will go back to Paris together some day, somehow. But this concert has just come too soon for us.”

Eagles of Death Metal, who were playing at the Paris theatre when the gunmen opened fire, will play the Olympia venue Tuesday in memory of the 90 fans who lost their lives that day.

“I don’t know if I’ll have enough strength”

In France, other fans who were there that day are torn about attending the concert.

“I want to go,” said Guillaume Munier, who escaped the gunmen with a friend by hiding in a tiny upstairs toilet for two hours.

“I’m going to at least go to the Olympia, but I really don’t know if I’ll be able to go inside,” he told AFP. “I don’t know if I’ll have the strength.”

Munier, 29, will never forget the moment when the gunmen came in shooting as he and a friend stood on the balcony watching the band play.

“When the shooting started, we looked for a way out,” he said. “We started down the stairs but then we saw that people were falling below so we ran back upstairs.

“I couldn’t see an exit there, so I thought we should go on the roof but I couldn’t find a way to get there either,” he added.

Fear

“Then as I was running around, I happened upon the bathrooms — they were too small to be toilets for the public so they must have been for the employees.”

Munier and his friend wedged themselves inside and turned off the lights. In the toilet next to them was a father and his son, he said. They stayed there for the next two hours until they were rescued by a French SWAT team.

“My only fear was that they would open the door,” Munier said. “We could hear them as they walked in front of us, but they never shot directly at the doors.

“We knew they would be looking for survivors to shoot so we told ourselves to stay put,” he said. “We’re lucky we did because when we were rescued, we saw bodies in front of the doors.”

Another survivor, Helene, said she is not at all worried and hopes it will help bring her closure.

“It will allow me to finish the concert,” she said.

- With reporting from AFP. 

Read: One of the Bataclan killers has been quietly buried in Paris>

Read: ‘We will never give up’: Eagles of Death Metal join U2 on stage in Paris>

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