An immigrant from West Africa is being lauded as a hero in France for being a real life Spiderman. He scaled a wall by hand to save a boy dangling from a fourth-floor balcony in Paris.
Mamoudou Gassama is not only getting the city’s praise, but he will be given French citizenship, the Elysee Palace announced Monday.
Gassama’s heroic feet was caught on video and went viral on social media. The incident happened on Saturday night in the north of Paris.
The West African was in that area of Paris to watch a soccer match in a local restaurant. He heard people screaming and cars honking in the streets. Gassama saw the young child hanging from a balcony and he climbed up four floors of the apartment building and rescued the boy. It took him less than one minute. By the time emergency services arrived at the scene, he had already pulled the child to safety.
Gassama, 22-years-old, was invited to the Elysee presidential palace Monday morning where he met French President Emmanuel Macron.
“As I Was Climbing Up, I Felt More and More Confident”
“I did not really think, I started climbing directly,” he told Macron. “As I was climbing up, I felt more and more confident.”
“Bravo,” replied the French president.
Paris Mayor Anne Hidalgo also spoke with Gassama. He told her that he arrived from Mali, West Africa just a few months ago and he wanted to stay in France.
“I replied that his heroic gesture was an example for all citizens and that the city of Paris will obviously be keen to support him in his efforts to settle in France,” Hidalgo wrote on Twitter. And within 48 hours, French authorities responded to Gassama’s wish.
The Elysee Palace announced Monday he will be made a French citizen and has been offered a job by the Paris fire brigade.