U.S. native visits Notre Dame Cathedral in Paris just hours before fire

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PARIS (WSAW) -- Macy Lillibridge says it was hard to hold back tears watching the Notre Dame Cathedral burn Monday. She's from the U.S. and is currently studying abroad.

She and her friends were at the cathedral just two hours before the fire started, but they left because it was too crowded. They had planned to see the inside of it Tuesday. So, when they found out about the fire, they decided to go see what was going on.

"We were expecting a small fire so we were like let's go check it out. So we get on the metro... it was a direct train ride to Notre Dame. We walk out and the sky is filled with smoke, there are people just standing with their mouths wide open silent," she said.