A homeless man who was present when a suicide bomber launched a deadly attack at a packed concert hall in the English city of Manchester on Monday night has spoken out about the horrors he witnessed at the venue.
Stephen Jones, who was sleeping outdoors near Manchester Arena at the time of the attack, gave ITV News a harrowing account of the events that transpired after the deadly explosions, which left at least 22 dead and 59 injured.
Jones, 35, told the outlet he woke up late on Monday night after he heard a huge bang, which he initially assumed was a firework.
“I then realized what was happening and saw children coming out, screaming and covered in blood,” he said.
He recalled in graphic detail rushing to help as many victims as he could, wiping blood from children’s faces amid a devastating scene of “lifeless” bodies strewn about the floor surrounded by “hysterical” moms.
“We were having to pull nails and bits of glass out of their arms and faces,” he told ITV News. “We haven’t slept most of the night because of what we’ve seen.”
After a clip of Jones’ interview was shared on Twitter, it quickly went viral, amassing over 23,000 retweets and 32,000 likes.
Unsurprisingly, it seems Jones’ compassion has really struck a chord with the online community.
After many Twitter users requested a way to donate to Jones to thank him for what he had done, a Manchester woman named Diane Moore started a JustGiving page so anyone interested could help him pay for a place to sleep.
Currently, the campaign “Steve The Hero” has raised £1,541, which is 308% of its original £500 goal.
Jones, however, is under the impression that his actions don’t make him a hero at all.
“It had to be done, you had to help,” he said. “If I didn’t help, I wouldn’t be able to live with myself for walking away and leaving kids like that.”
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