The third person who died in Thursday’s terror attack inside the Notre Dame basilica in Nice has been named and pictured.
Nadine Devillers, 60, was killed by Brahim Aoussaoui, 21, at the church in what was described as a ‘terror attack’ by local authorities.
Simone Barreto Silva, 44, Vincent Loquès, 54, also lost their lives in the stabbings.
Nadine’s friend of 30 years, Joëlle Guichard said she lived near the Notre Dame and would visit the church regularly.
Paying tribute to her, Joëlle told French newspaper Nice-Matin : “I heard this horror in Nice. I immediately thought of her, confides Joëlle. She lives not far from Notre-Dame, she is a believer… I took my phone to call her. And I saw I had a missed call.
“She often went to pray for the people she loved. From time to time she would burn a candle. She was a woman who loved others. She gave everything for others. She would go to pray for her husband, for me… To be happy. She was doing good around her. It was just love, this woman. It was just kindness, love and kindness, all the time. It was Nadine.”
Another friend of Nadine’s, Salvatore Gabriele, added: “She was smiling, outgoing, always making sure that everything was going well for others. Despite her modest conditions, she remained dignified and let nothing show of her personal problems.
“But she was a fighter. She always came out, testifies Joëlle, with perceptible admiration. She had enormous strength.”
Aoussaoui arrived in Nice at around 6:30am on the day of the attacks via the railway station – where he went on to change his clothes, French prosecutor Jean-Francois Ricard told journalists.
CCTV then showed Aoussaoui arriving in the church at 8.30am on the day of the attack and sitting inside for nearly half an hour.
Armed officers were seen storming the church before he was cornered and shot in the shoulder.
He allegedly shouted “Allahu akbar” – Arabic for “God is greater” – as paramedics treated him before he was taken to hospital.
Police described the scene as “a vision of horror”, and President Emmanuel Macron said France is “under attack”.
One victim of the attacks was named as Brazilian-born Simone Barreto Silva.
The 44-year-old had lived in France for 30 years and had three children, the Brazilian Consulate in Paris has confirmed.
Reports in Brazil claim she had three sons, though her Facebook profile shows two boys and a girl of unknown age.
The other victim, Vincent Loques, 45, was a warden of the Notre Dame basilica.
France was put on its highest alert – terror attack emergency – amid the stabbings and other incidents.
After arriving in Nice, President Emmanuel Macron said: “Once again, our country has been hit by an Islamist terrorist attack.
“Once again this morning it was three of our compatriots who fell in this basilica. It is France that is under attack. We will not give in to any spirit of terror.”
It’s understood Aoussaoui arrived in Europe on the Italian island Lampedusa on September via a migrant boat.
He then reportedly travelled on to Paris, arriving by October 9 with travel documents from the Italian Red Cross.
Speaking at their home in the Tunisian town of Bouhajla, Aoussaoui’s family said he had been in regular contact with them since he arrived in Europe.
And they even claim he sent them a selfie outside the Notre Dame cathedral before murdering the three victims.
Aoussaoui’s brother Yacine told Al Arabiya, an Arab media outlet, his brother wanted to spend the night in front of the cathedral.
He said: “He sent me a picture in front of it.
His family said: “What we saw in the images is him, our son.”
“What we saw in the images is him, our son,” the family said.
His own mum Gamra said she had been shocked by the events and had no idea why he chose to move to Nice.
She said: “I said to him you don’t know the French language, you don’t know anyone there, you’re going to live alone there, why, why did you go there?”
In 2016 Aoussauoi was convicted of “violence” and using a knife.