Police officer Arnaud Beltrame was hailed as a hero after he volunteered to take the place of an ISIS fanatic’s female hostage. The terrorist was holed up in a supermarket, firing on staff and shoppers, and shot Beltrame during the incident. Beltrame was taken to the hospital, but his injuries ultimately proved to be fatal.
The ISIS-linked terrorist when on a shooting spree at approximately 11:00 am local time on Friday in Trebes, France. Once he reached the Super U store, a standoff against police ensued.
The fanatic killed four people during the incident and wounded sixteen, two seriously.
Beltrame, 45, took the place of a female hostage during the standoff and was shot four times during the encounter.
On his deathbed, according to a report by the Daily Mail, Beltrame married Marielle, his fiancé. The bride wept uncontrollably during the ceremony, as it was clear Beltrame would not survive his injuries.
He died just hours after the ceremony at a hospital in Carcassonne.
The couple met in 2016 and were planning to be married in June.
According to Father Jean-Baptiste, the priest who led the ceremony in the hospital, the couple had “spend some 30 hours preparing for their marriage ceremony.”
“I gave him the sacrament of marriage,” he said, “and the sacrament of the sick.
He referred to Beltrame as an “extremely intelligent and courageous man.”
Samia Menassi, the Super U store director, credited Beltrame with saving the female hostage’s, who was her coworker, life when he agreed to take her place.
She said her colleague was in a “catastrophic state” after Beltrame’s death.
The terrorist, identified at 25-year-old Redouane Lakdim, a Moroccan-born French national, reportedly was demanding the release of Salah Abdeslam, a high-value suspect in the Paris attacks in November 2015 that resulted in the deaths of 130 people.
France’s Interior Minister, Gerard Collomb, announced Beltrame’s death in a tweet, saying, “Died for his country. France will never forget his heroism, bravery and sacrifice.”
“With a heavy heart, I send the support of the entire country to his family, friends and colleagues of the Gendarmerie of the Aude,” he added.
On Saturday, the country mourned with flags placed at half-staff.