Narwhal Tusk Hero's Life Changed 'Irreversibly' By London Bridge Terror Attack
On 29 November 2019, Jack Merritt and Saskia Jones were tragically killed in the London Bridge terror attack.
But there's no telling how many more lives could have been lost if it wasn't for the courageous actions of Darryn Frost, who took on the attacker with a narwhal tusk.
One year on from the horrific event, and Darryn is convinced the traumatic experience has changed his life irreversibly.
Speaking to LADbible, the 39-year-old said: "These events will have irreversibly changed the shape of my life.
"Things will never be the same for me, but hopefully I can channel any of these feelings, emotions and experiences into something positive for me and for society.
"Sadly, I do reflect on the day, probably too much. Often involuntarily, thoughts and scenes pop into my head.
"It's a process though, I think it'll just take some time for me to deal with. I've seen improvements, so I'm hopeful they continue and I'll be back to my old self soon."
Darryn, a communications manager at the Ministry of Justice, was taking part in a prisoner rehabilitation day at Fishmongers' Hall, adjacent to the bridge, when Usman Khan launched his deadly attack, armed with knives and a fake bomb vest.
Darryn recalled: "Because I had surveyed the whole downstairs area before the day started, I knew there were limited objects I could use to defend myself, so instinctively I turned to get something else.
"My first thought was a chair, but as I ran, I was presented with these two long narwhal tusks, in golden holders on the wall.
"I knew straight away what they were, I'd seen them on a David Attenborough documentary, but couldn't recall the name 'narwhal'; I never knew they were really valuable antiques - I felt bad that they got damaged.
"When I first approached Khan, I was trying to take everything in and understand what was going on. The mind races, it's a shock to your whole system.
"My thoughts were with the injured, and those who were tending to the injured, I just wanted to keep them safe. Not for a second did I think of my own safety, there wasn't any time to. I had less than three seconds to assess the situation and come up with a solution."
As Khan attacked Steven Gallant, who was also attempting to thwart the horrendous rampage, Darryn passed him the tusk before retrieving the other one and chasing Khan out onto the bridge.
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South African-born Londoner Darryn recalled: "While holding him at the end of the tusk, he threatened me with the bomb.
"My mind was reeling, I didn't want him to set it off in a building full of people, I was trying to think of my next action, I was drawing blanks.
"That's when Steve threw his chair and Khan went to attack Steve, so Steve became the one in immediate danger and I passed Steve the tusk, leaving me empty-handed in front of Khan.
"That's when I ran up to get the second tusk."
Darryn was able to stab Khan with the tusk through a gap in his protective jacket and he pinned him to the ground until police arrived.
Officers told everyone to get away, but Darryn didn't let go, fearing this would enable Khan to detonate his bomb vest - which proved to be fake.
Darryn was subsequently dragged away by an officer and Khan was shot dead.
We'll never know just how much harm was averted by Darryn's fearless actions, and he has rightly been hailed a hero. However, he thinks it is prison workers, who 'deal with people like Khan and ask for no thanks', who are the 'true heroes'.
Of course, it is hard to glean any good from something so harrowing, but Darryn hopes Jack and Saskia's legacy will live on.
Darryn said: "It's difficult to find positives after an event as tragic as this. If there are any to be found, it's the recognition that people like Jack and Saskia are out there.
"Their lives shine a bright light on their brilliant attitude towards others and I hope this will inspire the next generation to be as courageous and inspired to help those less fortunate than themselves.
"We believe that punishment will give the victim or survivors satisfaction or relief. Sometimes this will happen, to a degree, but it never really takes away the pain they feel. The only thing that will do that is forgiveness.
"If you hold anger and hate in your heart, the only person that feels that is you. It'll eat away at you, constantly. You become the prisoner, not the person who committed the offence."
Featured Image Credit: Twitter
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