"It's scary to see such a symbol that disappeared before you. It's been there for many years and in a few minutes it's gone … crazy," Binétruy told CNN.
"Paris without Notre Dame … madness," he added.
His words echoed the hardship and displeasure that many Parisians felt as they watched the historic burned structure. The CNN correspondent, Hadas Gold, said that people were stuck in the banks of the Seine to stare at the helpless.
Many Parisians, who grew up in the goth structure raised above the river, torn and covered one while the church surrendered to the fires and expanded the smoke clouds.
The city is silently hidden for helicopters and fire trucks. Katherine Finney said she and other onlookers could not even understand what was happening at first.
"I saw fire flame and thought it was no way it is the Notre Dame, "said Finney CNN.
But as the historic cathedral continued to burn, the crowds came out of hearing gasp and groans. ] "There are so many people gathering for everyone. Everything is really quiet," said Finney, an American tourist who visited the cathedral several times.
When the cathedral falls, everyone around him shouts. Some people are still lonely.
"This is the simplest thing I've seen – the crowd that's standing there, many people cry," Finney said. "It's a terrible tragedy."
However, some Parisians – still still after a series of deadly terrorist attacks in the capital of France in 2015 – have shown stability on Monday in the face of calamities. Some sing into the national anthem of France, while others gather in city bistros to share meals and drink alcohol as the cathedral continues to burn.
CNN's Gianluca Mezzofiore and Hadas Gold contributed to this story.