Antoine Leiris’ wife, Helene Muyal-Leiris, was among the 89 slain in the Bataclan concert hall in Paris on Friday. His original letter in French on his Facebook page has been shared more than 201,000 times since Monday and has been translated into several other languages.
He tells the attackers that he will not give them the gift of hating them, saying: “Responding to hatred with anger would be to give in to the same ignorance that has made you what you are.”
“I saw her this morning. She was just as beautiful as she was when she left home Friday evening, as beautiful as when I fell madly in love with her more than 12 years ago,” he says.
Leiris adds he is devastated with grief over the loss of his 35-year-old wife, but says it will be a short-term grief.
“I know that she will join us every day and that we will find each other again in a paradise of free souls, which you will never have access to.”
The conclusion emphasizes Leiris’ determination to ensure he raises the couple’s 17-month-old son “happy and free. Because no, you will not have his hatred either.”