Museum director, student recall Parisians' strength following Notre Dame fire

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As the world watched the Notre Dame cathedral burn Monday, many people in the United States looked back on time they spent in Paris and at the cathedral.

Peter Sutton is the executive director of the Bruce Museum in Greenwich. Sutton used to live in Paris and says the building has survived centuries of turmoil. Sutton says Parisians and Notre Dame always come out stronger after tragedy and this time will be no different.

But while the building can be restored, Sutton says the original craftsmanship can never be replaced.

"I don't believe that we'll ever be able to replicate the woodwork, the things on the choir and the nave, and I fear the great stained glass has been destroyed," Sutton says. "And of course, that's the whole point of Gothic architecture."

News 12 also spoke with a Quinnipiac University student who is spending the semester in Paris.

MORE COVERAGE: Nations express solidarity with France after Notre Dame fire 

"This cathedral is more than 800 years old," says Amy Thorpe. "It's a symbol of Paris and France, and so it was really heartbreaking to see what was happening to it."

Thorpe was there to witness the tragedy firsthand.

"I would say a real spirit of hope arose after a certain amount of time, and it was clear that people were still optimistic about being able to save Notre Dame," Thorpe says.

Within hours of the fire, French President Emmanuel Macron pledged they will rebuild. Macron wants it done in five years, but experts say it could take more like 10-to-15 years.

The billionaires behind Louis Vuitton, Gucci and Apple have pledged millions to help rebuild and restore the historic landmark.


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