"We all felt so helpless last night watching this fire burning more and more of Notre-Dame for so many hours…" said Anne-Pierre Guignard, field marketing director at our Ivanti Paris office. "This is beyond us, our strength, our knowledge, capabilities…"

On Monday, we watched in shock as news outlets showed footage of the 855-year-old cathedral up in flames. The medieval architecture—which began in 1163 and was completed in 1345—has stood tall during the French Revolution and both World Wars. Its rich history and cultural significance attracts nearly 30,000 visitors per day and 13 million visitors per year. 

But fires don't discriminate. And this fire grew with each passing hour, consuming more areas of the building and turning parts of the historical landmark to rubble.

Aline Kollert, a field marketing manager, feels as though "...we have lost a little part of our history, like losing an old family member."

Both Anne-Pierre and Aline recall where they were when they heard the news.

"I was driving back from work when I heard on the radio this incredible news: Notre-Dame of Paris Cathedral is on fire, a massive fire," said Anne-Pierre. "It is the kind of memory you will always remember, especially where you were when it happened. This struck me! I could not believe this was possible. So incredible, so sad."

Aline Kollert was on the train traveling home from the Paris office when she saw the news online. "I saw a post on Facebook and at first I thought it was fake news."

Hope for Notre-Dame Cathedral

"Notre-Dame is part of France history and one of the most emblematic monuments of Paris," Anne-Pierre continues. "It's also part of the world heritage as the most visited monument in Europe. When I saw the first images on TV, that was scary. But the fire fighters have been awesome and dedicated for 15 hours to save the building, avoiding final collapse.

"I had recently visited Notre Dame Cathedral with my nephew and we went the top of the two towers. It is so amazing to visit this +855-year-old 'lady,' built over two centuries!

"The cathedral building is highly damaged, but still standing, and we will rebuild it! After the damage and the pain, there is hope. It was good to receive so many messages from friends and colleagues and to see so many people across the global sharing our pain and proposing to send money to help rebuild Notre-Dame."

We're glad to see so much support in rebuilding a structure that means so much. Whether tragedy strikes in France, Brazil, China, or any other part of the world, the #IvantiFamily will always band together in support of one another. We hope for a quick rebuild and feel for those who have been affected by this event.