Lindt Chocolate Café manager Tori Johnson and barrister Katrina Dawson died in the 17-hour hostage situation, but both will be remembered for their sacrifices to save those in the café.
Right before the siege ended at 2:21 a.m. local time, radical Islamist Man Haron Monis started to fall asleep, and Johnson took advantage of the situation. He grabbed the shotgun, which allowed others to escape. Police did not tell the public why they chose to enter the building, but it might be Johnson’s courageous actions that led to the end. Police barged in and killed Monis, but not before Johnson passed away.
Johnson’s parents praised their heroic son and thanked the authorities for their hard work.
“We are so proud of our beautiful boy Tori, gone from this earth but forever in our memories as the most amazing life partner, son and brother we could ever wish for,” they said. “We’d like to thank not only our friends and loved ones for their support, but the people of Sydney, Australia, and those around the world for reaching out with their thoughts and prayers.”
They also sent thoughts and prayers to the family of 38-year-old Dawson, a mother of three. The barrister was killed “trying to defend her pregnant colleague, Julie Taylor.” The New South Wales (NSW) Bar Association released a statement, which said, “Katrina was one of our best and brightest barristers who will be greatly missed by her colleagues and friends at the NSW Bar,” said Bar President Jane Needham. “She was a devoted mother of three children, and a valued member of her floor and of our Bar community. Our thoughts are with her family at this time, including her brother, [well-known Sydney Lawyer] Sandy Dawson of Banco Chambers.”