A former Ohio State basketball player was a witness to the fire that heavily damaged the Notre Dame Cathedral.
David Lighty now plays basketball in France. On Monday, he and his family traveled to Paris and had just arrived at the cathedral as the fire was beginning to spread.
“As we were pulling up, there was literally smoke coming from the top of the roof so we walked around to the side of the building, literally like five minutes after we arrived, and you see a flame ignite on the top of the roof,” Lighty explained. “I want to say another five minutes after that, it just kept growing and growing and growing.”
Lighty said there was a lot of confusion and chaos, as first responders arrived.
“Some people were crying,” he said. “Some people were in tears. Some people were in a panic.”
Lighty and his family eventually boarded a train and safely returned to Leone, where they reside.
The magnitude of what they witnessed, however, is not lost on the athlete.
“It’s a historical building,” Lighty said. “It’s been around for years and years, and centuries. I mean, it’s a big landmark for France and Paris, a big tourist attraction and to see it in flames or on fire was kind of surreal.”