This guy saved 70 people in Orlando shootings. His name is Imran Yousuf

Published: June 17, 2016
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Imran Yousuf, a bouncer at the Pulse nightclub, knew something was horribly wrong when he heard the crack of gunfire PHOTO: MARINE CORPS TIMES

Imran Yousuf, a bouncer at the Pulse nightclub, knew something was horribly wrong when he heard the crack of gunfire PHOTO: MARINE CORPS TIMES

While one man went on a killing-spree at Orlando’s gay nightclub, there was another present that night who came to the rescue of the unsuspecting people and succeeded in saving dozens.

Imran Yousuf, a bouncer at the Pulse nightclub, knew something was horribly wrong when he heard the crack of gunfire. A Marine, who had served in Afghanistan, Yousuf’s training quickly kicked over.

Orlando shooter was regular at gay nightclub he rampaged

“The initial one was three or four” shots, said Yousuf, a sergeant who left the Marine Corps last month. “That was a shock. Three or four shots go off, and you could tell it was a high-caliber [weapon]. Everyone froze. I’m here in the back, and I saw people start pouring into the back hallway, and they just sardine-pack everyone.”

Speaking to CBS, the 24-year-old said he knew there was a door behind the panicked crowd, but people were too overwhelmed to unlatch it. “And I’m screaming, ‘Open the door! Open the door!’ ” Yousuf said. “And no one is moving because they are scared.”

As everyone stood rooted to the spot, only a few feet away from safety, Yousuf knew there was “only one choice” which could save them from being targeted by the gunman who could have been there any moment. “Either we all stay there and we all die, or I could take the chance of getting shot and saving everyone else, and I jumped over to open that latch and we got everyone that we can out of there.”

Yousuf’s act of heroism saved many lives that day. Asked how many people left through that exit, Yousuf told CBS that he estimated as many as 60 or 70.

“As soon as people found that door was open, they kept pouring out, and after that we just ran,” he said.

Orlando gunman went on Umrah pilgrimage

The brave young man served in the Marine Corps from June 2010 to May 2016 as an engineer equipment electrical systems technician, according to service records obtained by The Washington Post. He was deployed to Afghanistan in 2011 and most recently was assigned to the 3rd Marine Logistics Group.

The 24-year-old’s military awards include the Navy and Marine Corps Achievement Medal, the Afghanistan Campaign Medal, the Korean Defense Service Medal and the Sea Service Deployment Ribbon.

“There are a lot of people naming me a hero, and as a former Marine and Afghan veteran I honestly believe I reacted by instinct,” he wrote on Facebook, according to the Marine Corps Times.

During his interview with CBS, he went a step further, wishing he could have done more during the attack. “I wish I could have saved more, to be honest,” he said. “There are a lot of people that are dead…. There are a lot of people that are dead.”

Pakistan’s Foreign Office spokesperson Nafees Zakaria also drew attention towards the Muslim ex-marine who saved the lives of tens of people inside the club.

My father knew Islam is about peace, Muhammad Ali’s daughter says post-Orlando attack

“We need to reflect on these kind of acts also which Muslims are performing over there and the contributions Muslims have made over there,” Zakaria emphasised. He said there was a significant presence of Muslims in these Western countries and they had significantly contributed towards economic and political development in those countries.

This article originally appeared on The Washington Post.

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Reader Comments (50)

  • Thora Bora
    Jun 17, 2016 - 11:36AM

    ShameRecommend

  • Karachi
    Jun 17, 2016 - 12:42PM

    What were he doing in Gay club?Recommend

  • Ahmed
    Jun 17, 2016 - 12:54PM

    He is a Hindu from Indian origin, please check before assuming things based on a name.Recommend

  • Rohit
    Jun 17, 2016 - 12:57PM

    How’s a bouncer paid to do his job is a counterargument against the carnage which is clearly driven by religion induced hatred ?
    I am sure there were Muslims in NYPD when Twin Towers were attacked.Recommend

  • whatever
    Jun 17, 2016 - 12:58PM

    believe it or not but exception are everywhere. One muslim tried to save human from other muslimRecommend

  • BCCI
    Jun 17, 2016 - 1:02PM

    This news is incomplete. Please read more about what his background/origins are. Will begin to make more sense.Recommend

  • Thomas
    Jun 17, 2016 - 1:08PM

    Great, and FYI Express Tribune, please do mention that he is not only a Muslim, but a Muslim of Indian origin. :)Recommend

  • ajay kumar
    Jun 17, 2016 - 1:32PM

    “The Tribune” Not expected from you to not quoting that the person was from indian origin.Recommend

  • Raw is War
    Jun 17, 2016 - 1:35PM

    After every terror incidence, liberals search and project some feel good story about do-gooder muslims. If this guy was a ex-army man, he should have confronted him and reduced the nuber of deaths. Lets cut this political correctness.Recommend

  • sid
    Jun 17, 2016 - 2:04PM

    Just one clarification, the gentleman is a HINDU . Please Check before you try to claim him as “one of us”. The ” One of you” was a shooter!
    Here “CBS News identified Yousuf as a Hindu and his name caused some confusion. California-based newspaper India West, which interviewed his uncle, clarified that his mother and paternal grandmother are Hindus and he identifies with their religion. His family emigrated from Guyana, where his ancestors had gone from India.”Recommend

  • wb
    Jun 17, 2016 - 2:22PM

    @whatever:

    He’s not a Muslim. He’s a Hindu. He bears a Muslim name because his father was a Muslim. But he’s a Hindu and he practices the religion of his mother.Recommend

  • wb
    Jun 17, 2016 - 2:23PM

    @Raw is War:
    @ajay kumar:
    @Thomas:

    Wrong. WRong. WRong. He’s a Hindu with a Muslim name. Use Sheikh Google to get your facts straight.Recommend

  • anon
    Jun 17, 2016 - 2:36PM

    @ajay kumar:
    He is apparently a Hindu, not a muslims!Recommend

  • Jun 17, 2016 - 3:39PM

    @Karachi:
    If you read the article then you would know. Recommend

  • sgasha
    Jun 17, 2016 - 3:51PM

    @Rohit:
    you imbecile, hit shows the clearly false accusation that all immigrants and all people of color are terrorists.Recommend

  • Ch. Allah Daad
    Jun 17, 2016 - 4:17PM

    After every terrorist attack, radicals and their supporters find such excuses to diminish real tragedy. He did a good job but that was a brave man’s instinct and reaction. His good deed cannot be subtracted from the heinous crime. Recommend

  • Tamil Arasan
    Jun 17, 2016 - 5:11PM

    It’s very common for Guyana Indian origin Hindus to have other religious names for strange reason, Marine Imran Yousuf is a practicing Hindu as per himself – every one must aware of former Indian all-round cricketer Robin Singh who is from Westindies Guyana – we all know him by the name Robin Singh but his actual name is Robindra Narayan Singh…!!Recommend

  • Patel
    Jun 17, 2016 - 5:47PM

    All he did is opened the door!!! We just are desperately trying to find heros.Recommend

  • kartikey mishra
    Jun 17, 2016 - 6:21PM

    Not Imran Yousuf !!! He is an Indian please show correct newsRecommend

  • Stella
    Jun 17, 2016 - 8:32PM

    Heroism? No no no….
    All he did was open a door.
    You’re just making the story bigger by using his name prominently because it looks like a muslim name.
    You people make me sick with your overblown posts.Recommend

  • W M Syed
    Jun 17, 2016 - 8:57PM

    Very Well done Yousuf! Humanity is proud of you. Recommend

  • kdp
    Jun 17, 2016 - 10:09PM

    It is amusing as well as sad to see South Asians Hindus and Muslims squabble among themselves to claim this man belonging to their respective religion and country. Recommend

  • Animal
    Jun 17, 2016 - 10:10PM

    All of you are wrong, wasn’t from this or that religion, neither no one cares what religion his father or great great grandfather belongs to, he was a human and he saved 70 odd souls from devil with a gun. Recommend

  • sofia
    Jun 18, 2016 - 12:04AM

    doesnt matter where he’s from what religion or colour what counts is that he saved people’s life’s no one deserved to die like that gay or straight white or black or any religion we all humans at the end of the day Recommend

  • Nasir Hameed
    Jun 18, 2016 - 12:10AM

    Muslim is a Muslim whether from India, Pakistan or Kenya. From what I understand this is the aspect of Islam and Muslims in India that bothers Hindus a lot.Recommend

  • Just saying..
    Jun 18, 2016 - 2:52AM

    so many Indians here…..I wonder when do they work… economy seems to be doing well though?Recommend

  • Saleem khan
    Jun 18, 2016 - 3:10AM

    He is a gay who also served in the US military and killed many Muslims in Afghanistan! Wow what an inspiration! :pRecommend

  • Ahmad P
    Jun 18, 2016 - 5:39AM

    @Rohit:
    Sir may be those who are killing because of religious hatred are also doing a job and are paid for it…just maybe.Recommend

  • Salim
    Jun 18, 2016 - 6:09AM

    @Thomas:
    He is a Hindu not Muslim. Don’t go by Semitic name. Stalins in India are not Russians. Foreign name is attractive for many Indians.Recommend

  • Arsha
    Jun 18, 2016 - 7:13AM

    @Karachi
    Isn’t it clearly metioned that he is the bouncerRecommend

  • Priya
    Jun 18, 2016 - 7:14AM

    @Just saying..: it’s less than the number of your people that troll indian sites. Atleast we comment civil here.
    @saleem Khan He is bouncer/ guard at club not member visiting inside club. Gaurding royals doesn’t make you royal. Same way with such club. Tone your judegement and bigotry.
    @Nasir Hameed: Religion is not issue here, incorrect reporting is. He is Indian and also an hindu not muslim. Also, Indian muslims call themselves Indian first, religion comes later where it is their personal matter.Recommend

  • Xyz
    Jun 18, 2016 - 7:21AM

    @Saleem khan:
    How do u conclude that he is gay? I don’t believe gay clubs require bouncers to be gay too ! Secondly even if he is, what is the problem. Are you homophobic just like the Orlando shooter? As for killing Afghanistani muslims… Hasn’t pak government been doing the sameRecommend

  • ABC
    Jun 18, 2016 - 8:15AM

    Pakistan’s Foreign Office spokesperson Nafees Zakaria also drew attention towards the Muslim ex-marine who saved the lives of tens of people inside the club.

    Is your FO spokeperson idiot? Dont he read the news?
    http://www.independent.co.uk/news/world/americas/orlando-shooting-nightclub-imran-yousuf-ex-marine-saved-70-people-from-omar-mateen-a7082901.htmlRecommend

  • Mike Johnson
    Jun 18, 2016 - 10:20AM

    @Karachi:
    Did you not read the article, he worked there as a bouncer, try reading the article next time before jumping to conclusions!!!Recommend

  • vinsin
    Jun 18, 2016 - 11:00AM

    Will Pakistan Foreign office apologize and say that,
    “We need to reflect on these kind of acts also which Hindus are performing over there and the contributions Hindus have made over there”.Recommend

  • Abid
    Jun 18, 2016 - 11:11AM

    Shows the true side of muslims….good job…everyone deserves a chance to live , to improve in life.Recommend

  • Jun 18, 2016 - 2:12PM

    thanks from sharing nice contetns.Recommend

  • Muggly
    Jun 18, 2016 - 6:25PM

    His mother and grandmother are Hindus. Probably his mother married a Muslim man. His brothers name is Amir yousuf. @Tamil Arasan: Recommend

  • Mir
    Jun 19, 2016 - 4:29AM

    Resembles Obama Recommend

  • ahmed41
    Jun 19, 2016 - 7:20AM

    @Muggly:

    Sir does his name / religion/family background etc , matter ?

    Not to me !!!

    He did the right thing at the right time. Recommend

  • Parvati Persaud-Edwards
    Jun 19, 2016 - 8:22AM

    HE WAS A HINDU. JOURNALISTS MUST GET THEIR FACTS STRAIGHT. GOD BLESS HIM.Recommend

  • Parvati Persaud-Edwards
    Jun 19, 2016 - 8:26AM

    HE WAS WORKING. NOT EVERYONE THERE WAS GAY.@Karachi: Recommend

  • Parvati Persaud-Edwards
    Jun 19, 2016 - 8:29AM

    @Karachi: HE WAS WORKING. NOT EVERYONE THERE WAS GAY. JUDGMENTAL PEOPLE PROLIFERATE THE WORLD. REGARDLESS OF WHO THEY WERE THESE WERE PEOPLE WHO WERE LOVED, WHO CONTRIBUTED TO SOCIETY IN A MULTITUDE OF WAYS. JUDGE NOT LEST YOU BE JUDGED.Recommend

  • Jerry Gagne
    Jun 19, 2016 - 5:59PM

    Thank you, Thank you Thank you for saving lives .Take damn politics out of this.Recommend

  • Jun 20, 2016 - 7:00AM

    ‘”listen whtever religion he have courage to open backdoor and he save people , u shall all honour him and give credits to him”Recommend

  • nick
    Jun 20, 2016 - 7:00AM

    @ajay kumar: Then why did you massacre Muslims in Gujrat. even he Is off Indian origin, he a Muslim and not a HinduRecommend

  • Jun 20, 2016 - 9:43AM

    @whatever:

    He is a Hindu my friend….. keeps fathers surname & mother’s reIigion, is a practising hindu as mentioned by him in his identity papers. Recommend

  • Arif
    Jun 20, 2016 - 9:08PM

    Hindu or Muslim or Christian, he saved lives, that’s what really counts. Indian and Pakistani are paranoid about their religions. Please learn to live and let live.Recommend

  • ahmed41
    Jun 21, 2016 - 7:13AM

    @Arif:

    Live & let live . Learn to honour and understand other peoples’ religious beliefs.

    Stop wearing religion on your shirt sleeves.Recommend

  • danyalparacha
    Jun 22, 2016 - 10:58PM

    I proudly wear religion on my sleeves because I know am responsible for my deeds and liberalism is pathetic ! if a terrorist had a religion sabri would have been aliveRecommend

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