Journalist captures iconic photos of Brussels airport bombings

Brussels attack photographer recounts story 01:55

BRUSSELS -- When she took a now-famous photograph moments after the Brussels airport bombing, Ketevan Kardava couldn't believe she was alive, let alone still in one piece.

"People were crying and children and running," Kardava told CBS News. "Everyone was in shock."

Kardava, a reporter for Georgian Public Television, was buying a ticket when the bombs went off. An airport surveillance photo shows just how close she was.

"Here you can see that I'm standing here, in front of the desk, and the explosion, what I saw, was here," she described.

Photographer on taking iconic images of Bruss... 02:38

"My first impression was, 'Am I in the movie?' And I saw people wearing blood," Kardava said. "They were all on the floors without legs. Without legs, yeah. And the first what I did, I touch my legs. I don't believe that I have legs, you know."

Even so, she pulled out her iPhone and started taking pictures.

"I took her photo and 'Are you okay?' I asked her, but she was speechless. Nothing," Kardava said.

On Wednesday, those who were not there held a memorial for the victims. But for a woman grateful to be alive, the memorial is seared into her soul.

"Something very important happened in my life, because these pictures will be in front of me the whole life," Kardava said.