1. ITV Report

Wife of Tunisia victim describes moment her husband was shot dead

John Stollery was among the 30 Britons killed in the Tunisian beach massacre. Credit: Irwin Mitchell/PA

The wife of a former paratrooper killed during the Tunisia attack has described the moment he was gunned down to an inquest.

John Stollery, 58, and his wife Cheryl were desperately running away from the sound of gunfire when he was shot in the head and died.

Mrs Stollery told the hearing that the couple had gone for a swim, leaving their son Matthew gaming on the fourth floor of the hotel.

She said when they heard the shots at around 11.50am, they started running towards the other side of the hotel, following a path towards a nightclub at the resort.

I turned round thinking John was still immediately behind me and said 'John, he is there, he has got a gun'.

The gunman went past me. I expected him (John) to be at the side of me or just behind me. And when I turned around John was on the floor.

I screamed 'No' very loudly and 'John, John'. I went back up to him, stood over him and I could see from that moment he had already died.

Although his eyes were open, there was nothing there. I could see the damage caused to his head, especially the left-hand side of his temple.

– Cheryl Stollery

Mrs Stollery stood over her husband for a few seconds before turning her thoughts to finding her son.

Floral tributes left at the scene of the attack in Sousse. Credit: PA

She told the inquest that she ran into the hotel but it was deserted and while waiting for the lift she heard some men speaking Arabic so hid in a nearby phone booth.

The inquest heard that Mrs Stollery stayed in the booth for about seven minutes until she saw a man she recognised as the site gardener walking by with a little English girl with pigtails.

The hearing was told that he beckoned for her to join him and she was led to a laundry room where others were hiding and where she was covered with duvet covers.

The group was eventually ushered into a dining room with others from the hotel, some of whom had been injured.

The court heard that when she was allowed out of the dining room, she asked a member of hotel staff and another English holidaymaker to help find her son.

They were eventually reunited and then had to make the trip to Tunis, where Mrs Stollery identified her husband's body.