Less than a week ago, they were newlywed lovebirds, enjoying a honeymoon. But amid automatic gunfire and screaming victims, Steven Nabil and Narneem Shorees became convinced that their recent nuptials would soon be followed by funerals.
“I told him that’s it. This is our last seconds in our life. We’re gonna die right here,” recalled Shorees, reliving the conversation she’d had with her new husband while hiding in a small kitchen inside Istanbul’s Ataturk Airport.
Shorees and Nabil were on a five-hour layover Tuesday, waiting to return home to the United States, when three terrorists arrived by taxi, and began firing at the terminal entrance.
“I literally ordered salad, and a pizza slice,” said Nabil, speaking to CNN’s Ivan Watson. “When the guy turned to put the slice in the oven, I heard the gunshots from afar.”
Nabil admitted to some dark thoughts.
“My worst nightmare is haunting us now,” he remembered thinking. “This was the moment when I realized that I’d lose my new family that I just made. Everything I dreamed for.”
Fearing the worst, Nabil recorded a mobile phone message to his family, speaking in Arabic, and asking for prayers.
Forty-five minutes later, faith delivered for the couple, as they safely emerged from hiding, finding a bloody scene and a vast collection of first responders.
Shorees was rushed to the hospital, treated for bruises sustained during frantic trampling inside the terminal. Superficial wounds will heal, but recovery wouldn’t begin until she’d fled her Turkish nightmare.
The couple caught a flight to America from another Istanbul airport, hoping to soon forget the last stop of their European honeymoon.