A parliamentary assistant has described how he used his own shirt to try and stem the bleeding of victims of the suspected terrorist attack in Reading.
James Antell, who works for the Tory MP for West Dorset, Chris Loder, said he was left ‘shaken’ after stepping in to help those who were stabbed at around 7pm on Saturday.
He told the BBC on Tuesday: ‘I tried my very best to identify where the injuries were on the body of the casualty and took my shirt and used it to try and apply pressure to the wounds, but the casualties were in a very, very bad way.
‘I moved to another casualty and did my best to try to identify where that wound was and apply pressure to it. I felt a little bit shaken, but my overriding thoughts are with the victims and their loved ones.’
Scientist David Wails, 49, US citizen Joe Ritchie-Bennett, 39, and history teacher James Furlong, 36, were killed in the knife attack in Forbury Gardens, while three other people needed hospital treatment.
Their suspected attacker, Khairi Saadallah, 25, remains in custody after he was tackled to the ground by an unarmed police officer near the scene and arrested on suspicion of murder. He was later re-arrested under terrorism laws.
Mr Loder praised his parliamentary assistant in the Commons on Monday for his ‘remarkable and extraordinary effort’, and said he is ‘extremely proud’ to be able to call him a member of his staff.
He told MPs Mr Antell ‘ran courageously towards danger, his only focus to help the injured’, in the same way fellow Conservative MP Tobias Ellwood rushed to try to save PC Keith Palmer, who was killed in the 2017 Westminster terror attack.
Mr Loder, who was elected in 2019, added: ‘This was indeed a remarkable and extraordinary effort from a young man who has been with us in Parliament for little over four months and whom I am extremely proud to have as part of the West Dorset parliamentary team as I hope is the whole House.’
Home Secretary Priti Patel echoed his praise, telling MPs: ‘Can I join with (Mr Loder) in tribute to his assistant and to all other first responders who showed great humility, but also that sense of duty in coming together on Saturday in Forbury Gardens to respond and prevent the further loss of life.
‘As I have already said Mr Speaker, they are the very best of all of us and I pay tribute to everyone that was part of the emergency response.’
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