Maintenance worker hailed a hero for saving officer's life in Bi - WNEM TV 5

Maintenance worker hailed a hero for saving officer's life in Bishop airport attack

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Jeff Neville (Source: LinkedIn) Jeff Neville (Source: LinkedIn)
FLINT, MI (WNEM) -

An airport worker is being hailed as an unsung hero after the terror attack at Flint Bishop International Airport on Wednesday.

"I think, and I'm not afraid to say, I believe he saved Jeff's life," Bishop airport director Craig Williams said.

A middle aged airport maintenance worker is being recognized after a brutal attack.

"Especially proud of him because he jumped out there and did something that is courageous," Williams said.

Williams credits the worker with saving the life of Lt. Jeff Neville, who was critically stabbed Wednesday morning inside of the main terminal at the airport. The attack launched a terrorism investigation and shut down airport operations for about six hours.

Investigators said Canadian resident Amor Ftouhi traveled into the United States illegally through upstate New York last week and drove to Flint's airport.

He allegedly used a 12-inch knife to stab Neville several times in his neck.

On Wednesday, Ftouhi went inside the airport, up to the second floor where he spent some time inside before the attack. He also left two bags in the men's restroom, investigators said.

"The status on Officer Neville is he's doing well and he's recuperating," Williams said.

Neville was rushed into surgery and his status was upgraded from critical to stable.

The airport flags flew at half-staff on Wednesday in his honor.

Police presence was increased on Thursday and will remain so for an undetermined amount of time.

Firefighter Dan Owen and Airport Police Chief Christopher Miller also rushed to Neville's aid and helped restrain the attacker.

Owen, a veteran firefighter, had three things on his mind - subdue the attacker, save his friend and ensure airport safety.

Once those three things were secure, Owen rushed to his friend's hospital bedside.

"I felt I could leave the airport for an hour or so and see Lt. Neville," Owen said.

Owen and several others rushed to Neville's aid seconds into the attack. They said those seconds made all the difference in saving Neville's life.

After the attack, Owen said Neville was just happy to be alive.

"We had a good handshake and a good embrace and we thanked each other for having each other's back," Owen said.

The attack happened minutes before law enforcement were set to hold a briefing inside the terminal.

"The good Lord was looking over all of us because we had a lot of resources that were on site and already on the way to the airport," Williams said.

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