The family of a four-year-old boy who lived through the Westgate shopping mall attack says the now-iconic photo in which he can be seen wearing Crocs and an I Heart NY T-shirt while standing near the body of a deceased victim doesn't do the child's bravery justice.
According to Elliott Prior's uncle, the British lad was with his mother Amber and six-year-old sister Amelie (also in the photo) when al Shabab gunmen stormed the mall and began shooting shoppers.
After seeing his mom get shot in the thigh, Elliott "started arguing with them and called them bad men," his uncle told The Sun. "He was very brave."
One of the gunmen is said to have asked if there were any children in the mall, and "Amber made a decision to stand up and say yes," said the uncle
She was given permission to leave with her children, but was quick-witted enough to join to her party two additional children, including a 12-year-old whose mother was killed in the attack.
On their way out, the gunman allegedly rewarded Elliott with a pair of Mars bars, which he can be seen holding in the famous photo.
Amber later recalled how the gunman called after her, saying the group was only targeting Kenyans and Americans, not Britons.
"He told me I had to change my religion to Islam and said “do you forgive us? Do you forgive us?," she said. "Naturally, I was going to say whatever they wanted and they let us go."
A short while ago, Kenya's President Uhuru Kenyatta declared the four-day siege over after five attackers were shot dead and a further 11 were taken into custody.
The latest death toll stands at 67, including 61 civilians and six soldiers, but additional bodies are believed to be trapped under rubble in parts of the mall that collapsed during the final assault.
[photo via AP]