Cincy native survives Brussels airport bombing

Posted at 12:57 PM, Mar 23, 2016
and last updated 2016-03-23 14:47:41-04

CINCINNATI – A Cincinnati woman who was in the Brussels airport during Tuesday morning’s bombing shared the “roller coaster of emotion” she experienced during the terrorist attack.

Alison Talkers is a Notre Dame Academy graduate and native of Cincinnati who has been studying for her master’s degree in Brussels since September.

Talkers told WCPO’s Kristen Swilley via Skype that her flight from Switzerland had just landed when the explosions rocked the airport.

“At that point, instinct and survival mode kicked in,” she said. “We just heard people screaming and running towards us.”

She thought the chaos was caused by a mass shooting and took cover in a bathroom instead of going straight to the baggage claim, a decision that may have kept her safe.

"I definitely feel shaken up by it and especially when I was leaving the airport and seeing the actual devastation of what had happened,” Talkers said. “(It was) just kind of the roller coaster of emotion from being in there. And at one point running from something that you're not sure what it is and feeling that you're literally running for your life."

Talkers is currently in a village outside Brussels with friends. She said she plans to return to Brussels for class Monday and remain in the city through the fall when she’ll return to Cincinnati. Talkers said she plans to eventually move to Brussels permanently.

“If anything, I’m just very fortunate,” she said, “very grateful to have been able to make it out of the airport safely, and my heart goes out to all the people who were direct victims of these attacks.”