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Mali migrant 'Spiderman' saves Alzheimer's lady from deadly plunge
10 July 2020 @ 21:08

AN AFRICAN migrant saved the life of a lady with Alzheimer's when she was on the point of falling out of her third-floor window on Sunday after scrambling up the façade with his bare hands.

Samba Coulibaly, 44, who has lived in Spain for 11 years and works packing fruit and veg in a warehouse, says he has 'never climbed anything before in his life', but that he scaled the 10 metres (32'6”) to the pensioner's balcony 'by instinct' and without even thinking about it.

He had seen the woman, who is in her late 70s, trying to get out of the house via her window after discovering her front door was locked – she was dangling over the edge of the balcony.

Her distressed husband was trying hard to hold onto her and stop her falling, or jumping, but was gradually losing his grip on her as his strength sapped.

“There were lots of people down below shouting for help,” said Samba, who witnessed the terrifying scene in his home neighbourhood of Santiago El Mayor, in Murcia city.

“I just knew the fire brigade wouldn't get there in time and that she was going to fall, so I climbed up to help her.

“But if you asked me to climb up there again, I couldn't do it to order – I still have no idea how I did it.”

Samba has become a local hero in Santiago – but like most local heroes, he dismisses his brave action as something he felt he 'couldn't not' do.

And he has since been dubbed 'The Spiderman of Santiago'.

His story has points in common with Gorgui, 20, from Dénia (northern Alicante province), who rescued a wheelchair-bound man from a burning apartment block.

Samba is in a much more fortunate position than Gorgui – he is a long-term legal resident in Spain with a full-time job – although his initial struggles, when he travelled to the country from his native Mali, would have been similar. He spent months in a migrant interment centre after he got into Spain 'illegally' in 2009 by climbing the border fence from Morocco into Ceuta, a common 'back door' route into the country for migrants fleeing poverty, violence, persecution and political unrest.



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