Dispatches trickled in late Friday from Upstate residents who were in Paris when terrorists opened fire at multiple locations in the city center, killing about 100 people and taking others hostage at a music venue where a Greenville-born musician was to perform, according to news reports and social media.
Jesse "Boots Electric" Hughes, a Greenville native and guitarist for the rock band Eagles of Death Metal, had taken the stage at the Bataclan when gunmen came into the concert hall and began shooting, USA Today reported.
The Desert Sun newspaper in Palm Springs, California, where the band is based, reported Friday night that Hughes was safe after escaping from the back of the theater.
Also unharmed were Furman University students in Paris for the weekend as part of a study abroad program, a faculty member reported.
"Furman students visiting Paris this weekend from #BrusselsProgram are safe. I have heard from them," political science professor Brent Nelsen tweeted.
Witnesses at the Bataclan concert hall said a gunman shouted “Allahu akbar” (God is great) and fired into the crowd, multiple media outlets reported.
Hughes, 43, was born in Greenville and moved to Palm Springs, California, where he formed Eagles of Death Metal with friend and Queens of the Stone Age frontman Josh Homme in 2008.
Hughes told his brother that band members and the group's tech crew were accounted for. But there was no confirmation the the sound man, who works in the audience, also got out, the Desert Sun newspaper reported.
French security forces stormed the Bataclan theater late Friday, killing at least two attackers, the Associated Press reported.
Several ambulances were brought to the scene to cope with the victims.
The band posted a note on its Facebook page at about 6:45 p.m. saying: "We are still currently trying to determine the safety and whereabouts of all our band and crew. Our thoughts are with all of the people involved in this tragic situation."