Mehran Karimi Nasseri, Man Who Lived In Airport For 18 Years, Passes Away

Mehran Karimi Nasseri, Man Who Lived In Airport For 18 Years, Passes Away

Mehran Karimi Nasseri, the Iranian man who lived in Paris’ Charles de Gaulle airport for more than 18 years, has died, according to Variety. Nasseri, who was believed to have been born in 1945, got stuck at the airport in 1988 after landing in France without residency papers. Because he said his luggage containing his documents had been stolen at a train station and he had been expelled from Iran without a passport, he couldn’t be sent back or admitted into the country.

  1. Mehran Karimi Nasseri moved into Terminal 1 in August 1988. He remained a fixture there for nearly two decades as he was unable to leave. Legal documents clearing his entry to France eventually came through in 1999, but by that point, he was too nervous to leave and continued living in the airport.
  2. In 2006, he was eventually kicked out of the airport. Staff, who came to know him as “Lord Alfred,” dismantled his sleeping area when Nasseri was hospitalized. After being discharged from the hopsital, he was given a place at a shelter in Paris.
  3. In his final weeks, he moved back to the airport. Staff admitted feeling concerned for his ability to adjust to life outside of the airport after living there for so long. So, it was no surprise when he returned in the weeks before his death. Sadly, Mehran Karim Nasseri died of a heart attack on November 12, 2022 after suffering a heart attack.
  4. Nasseri’s life story was so fascinating, it became a Hollywood movie. It inspired 2004’s “The Terminal” starring Tom Hanks. The movie changed many of the details, making Hanks’ character from Eastern Europe and having him live in JFK. However, Nasseri’s experience was the clear inspiration behind the movie. It’s unlikely Nasseri ever saw the movie, but his legacy will live on at CDG airport and with those who met him over the years.
Jennifer Still is a writer and editor with more than 10 years of experience. The managing editor of Bolde, she has bylines in Vanity Fair, Business Insider, The New York Times, Glamour, Bon Appetit, and many more.