Just hours before a fire ripped through Notre Dame cathedral, one tourist captured a gorgeous photo of two strangers – a man and a young girl – playing in front of the building in the evening light.
The photographer, Brooke Windsor, is now hoping to track down the man who features in the photo, taken at 5:57pm local time on Monday night.
She shared the snap on social media just hours after news broke that a fire had destroyed the cathedral’s iconic spire and inflicted widespread damage – including the medieval roof made from thousands of oak trees.
Posting the photo on Twitter, Windsor said she almost went up to the man pictured and asked if he wanted the photo. “Now I wish I had,” she said. “Twitter if you have any magic, help him find this.”
Notre Dame, one of Europe’s most famous landmarks, was in the midst of renovations with some sections under scaffolding, when a fire broke out. Firefighters told a local news outlet they believe the blaze began in the cathedral’s attic.
French President Emmanuel Macron said France will launch a campaign to rebuild the cathedral, which is considered to be among the finest examples of French Gothic architecture.
Windsor’s photo, which depicts a moment of joy before the chaos, had been shared more than 80,000 times at the time of writing, with 150,000 likes.
In an update shared on Tuesday morning, she said she hadn’t yet been able to track down the people pictured, but added that she’s hopeful. “Yes, you may share this photo as you wish,” she tweeted. “Help us find the man and child.”
Many have their fingers crossed for some good news.
If you recognise the man pictured, get in touch: email@example.com.