A freelance French music journalist who escaped the Bataclan terrorist shooting on Friday (Nov. 13) night spoke to MSNBC on Sunday (Nov. 15) evening.
Explaining the inventive way he and several others seated in the balcony made it out of the Eagles of Death Metal show alive, he credits his survival to being “slow” and not making it to the main exit and fast as others.
“First, [I heard] the sound of the explosions and thought maybe it was in the show,” Lafont Batiste (spelling uncertain) told MSNBC. “Then people around me were more and more afraid. Then we can hear the sounds of scream and weapons and the smell of [gunpowder]. Someone before me had this idea of opening the window to get to the roof.”
Batiste said he and several others escaped out the window and hid out in a nearby stranger’s apartment building.
“It was difficult to get to the roof, but everyone helped each other. I saw really, really beautiful behaviors, because people … we were gentlemen. It was the ladies first. People in danger helping other.”
While hiding out in an apartment adjacent to Le Bataclan, he told the others, “Be happy — we are lucky.”
Since then, however, he admits to feelings of survivor’s guilt. “I think of the people who died there and I think…why me?”
This article originally appeared on billboard.com.