It was a lovely night in Nice, Damien Allemand recalled. Thousands of people thronged the sea-side promenade that skirts the edge of the city, faces tilted upward to watch fireworks explode overhead in honor of France’s favorite holiday. Light and music spilled from restaurants, cheers punctuated the bursts of fireworks.
Allemand, a reporter for Nice Matin, a local newspaper, was on his way to leave when he heard the crack of gunshots cut through the revelry. A fraction of a second later, a huge white truck went roaring past. It plowed into the crowds, as though it intended to hit as many people as possible.