The French firefighter who tendered to Princess Diana after her fatal car crash in Paris has recalled the royal’s final words on the 20th anniversary of her death.
Speaking with The Sun, Xavier Gourmelon – the sergeant who led the response team to the scene of the infamous collision at Pont de l’Alma tunnel – has admitted he was certain she would survive when he pulled her out of the wrecked limousine.
“The car was in a mess and we just dealt with it like any road accident,” he said.
“We got straight to work to see who needed help and who was alive. Diana said to me, ‘My God, what’s happened?’”
According to Gourmelon, the princess was conscious and had her eyes open when emergency services arrived.
“She was moving very slightly and I could see she was alive … I could see she had a slight injury to her right shoulder, but, other than that, there was nothing significant.”
“There was no blood on her at all,” he added.
It wasn’t until the 36-year-old was lifted onto a stretcher that she suffered a cardiac arrest.
“I massaged her heart and a few seconds later she was breathing again,” Gourmelon said.
“To be honest, I thought she would live. As far as I knew when she was in the ambulance she was alive and I expected her to live. But I found out later that she had died in hospital.” It was very upsetting.”
Gourmelon explained that was unable to speak publically about the incident until his retirement from the fire service.
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