Chicagoans in Paris witness Notre Dame fire: ‘Like we were watching something happening to a beloved friend’

The world watched in horror as a fireplace engulfed one in every of its most beloved landmarks. As the blaze gutted Notre Dame Cathedral in Paris, Chicagoans in France for trip witnessed the break.

They described a fireplace that not solely broken the bodily structure but wounded the guts of the town and its individuals.

Eric Brandt, and his spouse, Joan Yost, from the South Aspect, have been eating dinner at La Petite Perigourdine, just some blocks from the cathedral, once they observed smoke rising.

They arrived in Paris on Sunday.

Because the smoke intensified and the flames began to flicker, Yost stepped outdoors to take a couple of photographs together with her telephone.

Patrons emptied the restaurant, Brandt stated.

As the hearth engulfed the cathedral and Brandt watched in disbelief, a waiter commented: “Paris is burning.”

“It was surprising,” Yost stated. “Who would anticipate to point out up in Paris and have a serious monument burn down?”

When James Janega, a former Tribune reporter who lives on Chicago’s North Aspect, and his household arrived in Paris at 2 p.m. Monday, their first stop was the cathedral.

His family determined towards standing in line to get a tour of the historic construction. As an alternative, they took selfies with the landmark in the background. They then circled the outside, marveling at its structure, the stained glass windows, and the gargoyles perched atop the cathedral.

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