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Nov 16, 2015 6:01 PM

Landrigan: Nashua businessman just back from Paris tells anxious tale of attacks

NASHUA - Nashua businessman Jim Bender is no stranger to Paris having visited many times for work and pleasure.

"You have to be alert wherever you go," he said. "We live in a world where anything can happen to anyone, anywhere, any time. That’s just the new reality."

Last Friday he was near the end of a business trip.

"The city was under siege. People were terrified, saddened, it felt like Paris might never feel the same again," Bender recalls.

Bender and his wife strolled back to their hotel unaware of the chaos around them until they heard an explosion.

"At first there was just a smattering of sirens and it built to a crescendo, sirens were coming from every direction. It was like surround sound,’’ Bender said.

Bender got an early flight back to the states and warns Americans need to worry about admitting foreign refugees.

"We are going to have problems in American cities, and I just don’t mean New York and Chicago,’’ Bender said. "I mean Manchester, Nashua and Portsmouth if we don’t start waking up."

After traveling to France and particularly to Paris for the past 35 years, this is a trip Jim Bender will not forget.

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