Salma Hayek's husband pledges $113 million to rebuild Notre Dame Cathedral

salma hayek and François-Henri Pinault
salmahayek/Instagram

On Monday, at around 6:30 p.m. local time, Notre Dame Cathedral in Paris erupted in flames. For hours, the fire raged as firefighters struggled to save the 850-year-old building and onlookers stood on the street watching the iconic structure be consumed. The fire has since been put out, but not before horrific damage was one. As France continues to mourn, many like Salma Hayek's husband François-Henri Pinault are making financial pledges to help rebuild Notre Dame.

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Pinault said in a statement, according to People, "My father and myself have decided to release a sum of €100 million from our Artemis funds to participate in the effort that will be necessary for the complete reconstruction of Notre-Dame." Pinault's father is François Pinault, and Artemis is the family holding company where the pledged donation of over $113 million will come from.

Many more are following Pinault's lead.

Pinault's was the first major donation that was announced, but many more have followed. The LVMH group--which owns Louis Vuitton, Christian Dior, Hennessy, and other luxury brands--has pledged more than $225 million, and so has the French cosmetic company L'Oréal.

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Salma Hayek was in shock when she saw the fire.

Salma shared this photo of Notre Dame's famous spire burning with the message, "As many others I’m in deep shock and sadness to witness the beauty of Notre-Dame turn into smoke. I love you Paris." She and Pinault have a home near the cathedral.

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President Emmanuel Macron is determined to rebuild the cathedral.

Pinault's pledge came after President Emmanuel Macron made a speech on Monday night promising to restore the cathedral. According to People, Macron announced to the many gathered outside the cathedral, "It is with pride I tell you tonight we will rebuild this cathedral...we will rebuild Notre Dame because it is what the French expect of us, it is what our history deserves, it is, in the deepest sense, our destiny."

For centuries Notre Dame has graced the Paris skyline.

The foundation stone for the cathedral was laid by Pope Alexander III in 1163. The cathedral was completed in the 13th century, and the central spire was built in the 19th century as part of a restoration effort. It's hard to believe that in minutes flames were able to destroy what had stood for centuries.

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All that is left to do is rebuild.

The cause of the fire is still under investigation. The day after the fire, the cathedral no longer has a spire, and its roof has been destroyed. All that is left to do is rebuild, but as French author Bernard-Henri Levy said, as reported by CNN, "How can you rebuild eight or nine centuries of history? How can you rebuild the tears, the whispers and the memories of a whole country and of the whole civilization?"

Topics: celebrities  roman catholic