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Vermonter Living In Paris Speaks Of Resilience

Paris-memorial-AP-Frank-Augstein-20161116.jpg
Frank Augstein
/
AP
People place candles and flowers at a makeshift memorial in front of the restaurant Le Carillon, where one of Friday's attacks took place.

The news of what happened in Paris Friday night has sent shock waves throughout the world. At least 129 people were killed in coordinated terrorist attacks, with the Islamic State claiming responsibility.


Christine Savell, 29, is from Stowe, and she moved to Paris about two months ago. She spoke with VPR Monday about how the resilient city is responding to the attacks.
 
Savell says she had a friend visiting from the United States, and they had planned to walk around Paris Friday night, but due to complications in their plans they took the train to her apartment in South Paris instead.
 
She first heard of the attacks when she woke up the next morning, and she says she felt “shock, complete shock. My heart really went out to all the French people who were affected by this. It was really, really tragic news.”

Savell, who is half French, says she moved to France in part to reconnect with her heritage.

“In Paris, everyone is still in mourning, everyone walks around with heavy hearts. Also there is a bit of anger about what happened.”

“But there’s also a lot of hope," she adds. "There’s a lot of people who are feeling very patriotic, and not afraid. They are going about their daily lives as they normally would, and I think that sends a powerful message too.”

"There's a lot of people who are feeling very patriotic, and not afraid. They are going about their daily lives as they normally would, and I think that sends a powerful message too." - Christine Savell

Savell says that Parisians are feeling very united, and are strong and resilient. She says #PorteOuvert, or “open door,” showed how locals responded on social media; many people opened their doors to those trying to get off the streets Friday night.  

Savell says the attacks have not changed her mind about living in Paris, and she intends to stay for a year or two at least.   

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