Woolwich heroine Ingrid Loyau-Kennett, who stopped to try and help Drummer Lee Rigby and ended up talking to his alleged killers, has spoken for the first time after getting home to Helston.
She told the West Briton her intervention, which drew praise from everybody including Prime Minister David Cameron, was just down to natural instinct.
The feisty mum-of-two, who lives in Bulwark Road in the town, says she was on autopilot when she jumped off a double-decker bus to administer first aid to Mr Rigby in John Wilson Street, Woolwich, on Wednesday afternoon.
She pushed her way through people trying to board the bus and hurried over to Mr Rigby, and immediately checked for a pulse.
And when she looked up, she said a man with bloodied hands was standing over her holding a revolver in one hand with and two knives in the other.
Ingrid, a qualified teacher who is currently looking for work as a translator, said: “I didn’t have any time to register if I was scared or not. All I wanted to do was help the person in the road and keep as much attention on me as possible, I didn’t want anyone else to get hurt. That’s all I was thinking.
“He told me he had killed a British soldier, because they were ‘killing soldiers in Islamic countries’.
“I asked what difference this would make in the long run – he was just one man and we are many.”
Ingrid said she spent 10 minutes talking to the alleged killers – and then got back on the bus to continue her journey. She felt she had done all she could.
It was then that the police moved in. “It must have been seconds after I boarded the bus that I heard gunfire,” she said.
“Around eight to ten police cars mobilised very fast and shots were fired.”
The bus erupted in screaming at that point.
French-born Ingrid again took matters into her own hands and says she then attempted to defuse the panic on board the bus.
She said: “The passengers started to scream, but I told everyone to calm down and that it was all over.”
Mrs Loyau-Kennett had been in London visiting her two children, Basil and Pawony. She was on her way back to Helston via Victoria Station in London at the time of the incident.