When Isobel Bowdery, 22, showed up to a rock concert on a Friday night at the Bataclan theatre in Paris, she describes the atmosphere as “happy,” adding everybody was dancing and smiling.
On that Friday night, 129 people died in a series of attacks in Paris. The death toll only keeps rising as another 350 were injured— many of them with severe trauma.
The 22-year-old South African student described her experience as a concertgoer-later-hostage in a Facebook post that has now gone viral, with millions around the world expressing condolences.
Bowdery survived the attack inside the Bataclan theatre— where at least 80 people were killed— by playing dead, she wrote.
“Shocked and alone, I pretended to be dead for over an hour, lying among people who could see their loved ones motionless.. Holding my breath, trying to not move, not cry - not giving those men the fear they longed to see. I was incredibly lucky to survive. But so many didn't.”
“It wasn't just a terrorist attack, it was a massacre. Dozens of people were shot right infront of me. Pools of blood filled the floor. Cries of grown men who held their girlfriends dead bodies pierced the small music venue. Futures demolished, families heartbroken. in an instant,” she wrote.
Note: The explosions and shootings that occurred in Paris were among the deadliest in a weekend full of fatal attacks. A day before the Paris attacks, on Thursday, nearly 40 people died— another 181 injured— in a double suicide attack in Beirut, Lebanon. On Friday, the same day of the Paris attacks, nearly 30 people were killed in Baghdad— dozens injured— when a suicide bomber struck a funeral memorial service. All three attacks happened almost within 24 hours.