Ripon Tunisia attack witness tells of horror after narrowly escaping death

Ellie Makin was back in the UK by Saturday morning
Ellie Makin was back in the UK by Saturday morning

A Ripon woman has told of how she narrowly escaped death when a gunman opened fire on holidaymakers in Tunisia.

Tennis coach Ellie Makin, who teaches in Harrogate, said she “expected to die” after she saw the man produce a gun from a beach parasol and start shooting at tourists.

Recalling her fear as she and others fled the armed attacker, the 22-year-old said: “He had an umbrella in his hand. Next minute he dropped this parasol and out came this gun.

“He started shooting. He mainly shot to the right-hand side. If he had shot to the left I don’t think we would have been here today.

“All I did was shout ‘run, there’s a gun’.”

The former British tour tennis player hid in a hotel room for more than an hour, staying away from the windows, as she heard the shooting getting closer.

She said: “Everybody was screaming.

“I was expecting not to come home and to die out there.”

A total of 38 people were killed when a man with links to the Islamic State group opened fire near Sousse.

Tunisian officials have said they are certain 23-year-old Seifeddine Rezgui had help in carrying out the attack.

Emerging once the danger had passed, Miss Makin said of witnessing the aftermath: “It was horrific.

“Seeing all this blood, all these bodies left right and centre.

“It was just the most horrific experience of my life.”