Hostage hailed a hero in Sydney siege

A 34-year-old male hostage has been hailed as the hero of the Lindt Cafe siege in Martin Place.

He has been identified as Tori Johnson, who had been store manager at the Lindt Chocolate Cafe for over two years.

According to reports, Tori noticed that the gunman Man Haron Monis was starting to doze off.

The male hostage noticed and used the opportunity to try to wrestle the gun from the hostage-taker.

At some point there was a shot, and it was this activity that caused the sniper hiding in Channel 7 to believe there was a gunshot and orders were given to rescue the hostages.

Within seconds, the heavily armed police stormed the building.

In the crossfire, both Tori Johnson and 38-year-old Katrina Dawson were killed, as well as the gunman.

Tori had worked at the Lindt cafe since October 2012 and had worked at a string of other restaurants and hospitality companies around Sydney.

Former colleague Tony Manno, who worked with Mr Johnson at Sydney's Adria Rybar & Grill for a number of years, said he was shattered to hear the news this morning.

"Tori was a great guy, a good guy to be around," he said.

"He got on really well with all the staff," he said.

Katrina Dawson - one of the victims of the Martin Place siege. Photo: Linked In

Katrina Dawson is a mother-of-three and was a barrister at Selborne Chambers.

Katrina was married to Paul Smith, a partner at Mallesons.

She studied law at Sydney University, where she lived at the women's college as a student.

Ms Dawson did her clerkship at Mallesons where she met her husband.

She is the sister of Sydney lawyer Sandy Dawson who has previously prepared legal work for Channel 7 and is well known in the Sydney legal community.

The president of the NSW Bar Association, Jane Needham SC, NSW Bar association has released the following statement:

"Katrina was one of our best and brightest barristers who will be greatly missed by her colleagues and friends at the NSW Bar. She was a devoted mother of three children, and a valued member of her floor and of our bar community. Our thoughts are with her family at this time, including her brother, Sandy Dawson of Banco Chambers."

Several tribute pages have already emerged on social media for the pair.

One describes Tori Johnson as an Australian hero, with one of the comments simply saying "Australia’s hero – RIP Mate".

Others have already attracted comments and messages from around the globe.

One of the messages of support left on a Facebook tribute page for Tori Johnson. Photo: Facebook.