Mamaoudou Gassama has been officially dubbed ‘Le Spiderman’ after he heroically saved a child who would have fallen off a fourth story balcony in Paris, France.
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The brave man is an immigrant from Mali who recently came to France to start his new life. His courageous action granted him automatic French citizenship and a role as volunteer firefighter in the force.
Gassama met with the French President Macron this morning at Elysee Palace where he was repeatedly thanked and told he would become a naturalized citizen. He was also thanked repeatedly by Anne Hidalgo, the Mayor of Paris, who called him on the phone. She stated that he was the ‘Spider-Man of the 18th’ referring to the Parisian district where the action took place.
— Élysée (@Elysee) May 28, 2018
Translated from French, Hidalgo also said in her tweet, “I’m very happy for The President of the Republic made a fine decision in favour of this hero who saved the life of a child in Paris. I see a positive signal from what France can do in terms of reception and willingness to integrate.”
The child in question was seen dangling off a fourth story balcony and appeared to be just out of reach of any adult who was in the building. Gassama spotted him and immediately climbed up four floors using only his bare hands as tools. He managed to climb up very fast and reached the infant just before he would have dropped to the ground below, potentially saving his life.
The video also showed another man who was watching the scene from his own adjoining balcony. He was seen trying to reach out and grab the infant but was unsuccessful because there was a metal barrier separating his balcony from the other one. A large crowd gathered to watch the rescue efforts and they all cheered and clapped once they saw Gassama bring the child to safety.
In the widely circulated video footage, Gassama can be seen jumping and climbing up three balconies to get to the child. He then flings himself into the fourth story balcony and quickly manages to life the child up and in. All this happened with one smooth movement of his arm as the child was effortlessly brought back to the safety of the balcony.
Not all heros wear capes pic.twitter.com/UxkxxT4jGM
— Thanos ? ??#YPsummerBoatParty? (@Kamzy_YP) May 27, 2018
In an interview with BFMTV, Gassama stated that he reacted purely out of instinct and did not have any plan set in place. He said, “I did not think, I saved him. When I took him in my arms, I spoke with him and asked: ‘Why did you do that?” He didn’t get an answer out of the infant who was most likely also in severe shock.
A few days later, Gassama recalled the incident all over again for reporters, “I felt afraid when I saved the child … [when] we went into the living room, I started to shake, I could hardly stand up, I had to sit down.”
The fire service in Paris thanked Gassama and said it was lucky he was physically fit and could climb up. A spokesperson said, “He explained to me that he had arrived from Mali a few months ago dreaming of building his life here. I told him that his heroic act is an example to all citizens and that the city of Paris will obviously be very keen to support him in his efforts to settle in France.”
Meanwhile, Twitter was ablaze with reactions to Gassama’s bravery and courage.
This is Mamoudou Gassama, a Malian immigrant meeting w/ French president Macron, as he was being offered a French citizenship and a job with the fire brigade.Mamoudou heroically saved a 4-yr old boy hanging off a balcony of a four storey building in Paris. Beauty of Selflessness. pic.twitter.com/SygVxonn7J
— Khalid,TheWakaholic ?? (@dr_khalidz) May 28, 2018
Hero climbs up outside of Paris building to save child dangling from balcony. This guy Peter Parker as in Spiderman! Humanity still exists.
Mamoudou Gassama (22 years old from Mali) scaled 4 storeys in 30 seconds to save child dangling. Good job brother, wakanda forever! pic.twitter.com/jJavpXDAGu
— ᵈᵉʷᵃ ᵏˡᵃˢᶤᵏ ᵃˡᵉˣᵃᶰᵈᵉʳ (@Dewa_Klasik) May 28, 2018
I’m lost for words. My wonderful Daisy saw Mamoudou Gassama scale the building to save the child on the news, asked me his name. She went away & came back having written him a letter. Something in my eye. pic.twitter.com/SjpuHSwfzc
— Mike Holden #FBPE (@MikeHolden42) May 28, 2018
#Africa‘s real life spiderman, Mamoudou Gassama, a 22-year-old undocumented Malian immigrant living in Paris climbed 4floors of an apartment to rescue a baby hanging off a balcony
— Trendy Africa (@AllAfricanStyle) May 28, 2018
Mamoudou Gassama, a migrant from Mali has been given French citizenship by the French president after a video of him saving a child hanging from a balcony went viral.
He was also offered a job as a firefighter.
Do good, and good will be done to you. pic.twitter.com/xxJTvc3RHF
— IlmFeed (@IlmFeed) May 28, 2018
Mamoudou Gassama is only 22 years old and originally from Mali (which btw is the world’s fourth poorest nation).
Mamoudou scaled 4 stories, bare handed, in 30 seconds, and saved a toddler in Paris.
Not all heroes wear capes & the Malian Muslim spider man is no exception.?✊? pic.twitter.com/amsTJntMjj
— Qasim Rashid, Esq. (@MuslimIQ) May 28, 2018
– 22 year old immigrant
– Arrived from Mali a few months ago
– Saved boy hanging from fourth-floor balcony by scaling the building
– Invited by President Macron and made a French citizen pic.twitter.com/Z1XTQO2mNE
— The Spectator Index (@spectatorindex) May 28, 2018
It was certainly an adrenaline rush that had prompted him to climb up that fast using just his hands! Someone in the crowd had called the firefighting department but by the time they arrived, they saw the child was already safe.
We are sure Gassama will not find it difficult to settle down now!