Hero Polish porter who fought off London Bridge terrorist collects bravery award from Princess Anne
A Polish hero who used a ceremonial pike to fight off a terrorist on London Bridge in 2019 has been awarded the Queen’s medal for bravery.
In a ceremony at Windsor Castle, Princess Anne presented Łukasz Koczocik with the Queen's Medal for Gallantry, which recognises exemplary acts of courage.
Posting pictures from the ceremony on his Facebook, the delighted 42-year-old wrote: “Today was a really special day for me.
“Received Queens Gallantry medal from Princess Royal Anne, and most importantly all my closest people were there with me.”
In 2019, then-kitchen porter Koczocik had been washing glasses in the basement of Fishmongers’ Hall in London when he heard blood-curdling screams from upstairs.
Finding that terrorist Usman Khan had killed two people during a prisoner rehabilitation event being hosted at the Grade II listed building, Koczocik grabbed the ornament known as a boarding pike and attempted to disarm Khan.
The Polish hero suffered brutal slash wounds as the two became locked in kill-or-be-killed combat, allowing panicking guests to escape.
Koczocik was then joined by two others and, despite his wounds, chased Khan outside on to London Bridge where the terrorist was then shot dead by armed police.
Upon receiving his award on Tuesday, Koczocik told the PA news agency: “This medal closed the matter, I have already put this attack behind me, and yet it is an incredible honor.”
“I just did what I thought was right at that time and place, I never considered myself a hero.
“Every time I think about the people who lost their lives that day, my stomach still clenches.
“They were young people, smart people. I never knew them personally, but I still feel bad that I couldn't do anything else to stop it.”
Fishmongers’ Hall where Koczocik still works after being promoted to head porter posted on its website: “It is with the greatest pride that the Company relays that staff member Lukasz Koczocik has been awarded the Queen’s Gallantry Medal for his actions in tackling the terrorist during the tragic incident at Fishmongers’ Hall on 29th November 2019.”