(Reuters) - Spencer Stone, the U.S. Air Force airman who helped thwart an August train attack in France, was trying to stop a fight between a man and a woman outside a Sacramento, California bar when he was stabbed during a brawl on Thursday, a witness told a local TV station.
Stone remained hospitalized in serious condition on Friday at UC Davis Medical Center in Sacramento after undergoing surgery on Thursday. The hospital said he was expected to make a full recovery.
Eric Cain, who works at a liquor store near the bar and witnessed the fight, told the CBS Sacramento affiliate KOVR on Thursday that a woman was arguing outside the bar with a man who appeared to be her boyfriend. She hit him with a plastic bag, and he then punched her in the face, Cain said.
"The big dude, the white guy, stood up and kinda got in his face," Cain said, referring to Stone.
In the fight that ensued early on Thursday, Stone was stabbed several times in his torso, authorities said.
"I saw the back of his shirt. I saw a big red mark on the back of his shirt, and another random person walked by, and I just kinda went, 'I think the dude got stabbed,'" he said.
Stone was one of three Americans who subdued a gunman on a train headed to Paris in August. Authorities said Thursday's stabbing was not related to Stone's role in the train incident and had no connection to terrorism.
Stone's assailant has not been caught.
(Reporting by Katie Reilly; Editing by Will Dunham)