Nice basilica terrorist attack: Who were the victims?

Nice basilica terrorist attack: Who were the victims?

Basilica of Notre-Dame in Nice, France. Credit: Victor Kiev/shutterstock.
Basilica of Notre-Dame in Nice, France. Credit: Victor Kiev/shutterstock.

.- This story is developing and will be updated:

Bells tolled in Catholic parishes across France in memory of the three people killed in a knife attack at the Basilica of Notre-Dame in Nice Thursday morning.

This is what is known so far about the victims:

Simone Barreto Silva, a mother.

Brazil’s foreign ministry has identified one of the victims as Simone Barreto Silva, a 44-year-old mother of three children.

Silva was born and raised in the Brazilian city of Salvador before coming to France, where she is said to have lived for 30 years.

She worked in Nice as a caretaker for the elderly. On social media, she often shared Scripture verses in Portuguese and had an image of Christ's Sacred Heart prominently displayed on her Facebook profile.

Silva was attacked inside the basilica before taking refuge in a nearby cafe, where she died from stab wounds. According to Radio France Internationale (RFI), a witness heard her say, “Tell my children that I love them,” as she died.

Vincent Loques, sacristan:

One of the victims has been identified as the sacristan of Notre-Dame Basilica in Nice, Vincent Loques, who was 55 years old and a father of two daughters. He had served the basilica as sacristan for 10 years.

Catholics in Nice remembered Vincent for his dedicated service to the Church. Fr. Jean-Louis Giordan, the former rector of the basilica, told Vatican News that he first hired Vincent as sacristan of the basilica a decade ago.

A person familiar with the basilica told the French daily Le Parisien: “He's not just a sacristan. He helped a lot the priest who was old. … He was the handyman. The candles were always well lit … He was very discreet and very efficient. He didn’t speak much. He acted with great humility and respect. He is the first person we thought of when we learned of the attack,”

“He was an ordinary man, in the good sense of the word: nice, open,” Fr. Gil Florini, parish priest of Saint-Pierre-d'Arène-de-Nice church, told Le Figaro.

Nadine Devillers, a wife and friend:

A woman, reported by a French prosecutor to be 60 years old, who came to pray at the basilica on the morning of Oct. 29.

Le Figaro reported that she was found dead with her throat cut, “nearly beheaded,” near the holy water font inside of the basilica.

National Antiterrorist Prosecutor Jean-François Ricard said she died by “a very deep throat of the order of a decapitation.”

A friend of 30 years, Joëlle Guichard, told regional French newspaper Nice-Matin that Nadine lived near the basilica and would often stop there to pray and light candles for her loved ones.

She was married to her husband for 26 years. According to Nadine's friends, despite personal difficulties, including financial, "she gave everything for others."

"She was smiling, outgoing, always making sure everything was going well for others. Despite her modest conditions, she remained dignified and let nothing show of her personal problems," Salvatore Gabriele, another friend of Nadine, told the newspaper.

In addition to those killed in the attack, police report that others were injured in the basilica.


Police arrest perpetrator:

French police say they arrested the perpetrator, who has been identified as Brahim Aouissaoui, 21, who reportedly arrived in late September, first at the Italian island of Lampedusa, and then traveling to France. Aouissaoui is reported to have been taken to the hospital by police with a gunshot wound.

Tags: Terrorism, Catholic News, France, Nice, Nice attack

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