FIVE years after Ignacio Echeverria lost his life as he bravely fought off terrorists with his skateboard during the London Bridge attack, moves are being made to have him recognised as a saint.
The 39-year-old from Madrid was working as a banker in London when he got caught up in the attack on June 3 2019 when terrorists drove into pedestrians in a hired van in Borough Market before attacking passersby with 12-inch knives.
Eight people died that day and 48 were injured but Echeverria was hailed as hero after rushing into the fray and fending off the knife-wielding terrorist from stabbing others by using his skateboard.
The Queen posthumously awarded Echeverria the George Medal in recognition for his “act of great bravery” while Spain awarded him with the Great Cross of the Order of Civil Merit which recognises “extraordinary services” by Spanish and foreign citizens.
Across Spain, skate parks have been named after Ignacio Echeverría to honour his inspiring actions.
And now he looks set for sainthood following a campaign by auxiliary bishop of Madrid, Juan Antonio Martínez Camino, to have him canonised by the Catholic Church.
Echeverria’s family had to wait until five years had passed since his death as required by the church law but are now preparing to initiate the process.
Although traditionally a lengthy and arduous process requiring evidence of miracles, Pope Francis introduced fast-track canonisation designed to honour Christians who had “voluntarily and freely offered their life for others and persevered with this determination unto death”.