Taft students visit Notre Dame hours before the fire
by BRIAN NADIG
Taft High School principal Mark Grishaber has been a proponent of overnight trips for students because they create lasting memories which go beyond the classroom.
French class students from the school visited the Notre Dame Cathedral in Paris around 9 a.m. Monday, April 15, and will have the lasting memory of how the historic structure looked before it was engulfed in flames.
Pictures taken by Taft international baccalaureate coordinator Irene Kondos show the cathedral’s spire before it collapsed along with several other images showing the interior and exterior of the cathedral just hours before the fire started. French media have reported that the start of the fire may have been related to renovation work being done on the spire.
Another picture shows the students in front of Notre Dame, whose construction began in 1163 and took about 200 years to complete. It is widely considered the most famous example of French Gothic architecture.
Hundreds of millions of dollars reportedly have been pledged for the restoration of the cathedral. Early reports indicated that there were no fatalities as a result of the fire, but one firefighter was injured.
The Taft students have been in France since Saturday and are returning at the end of this week.