In English, even though you're describing facts which may still be true, you still want to use the past tense in a narrative story like this. Why? Because you're describing the facts from the perspective of an agent in the past experiencing that fact in a past moment. It is true now, but it was also true then, and that's the part you want to emphasize.
"One day, a fox saw a lion. The lion WAS big."
"Before I saw the Eiffel Tower with my own eyes, I didn't know it WAS so tall."
"I met a man yesterday. His name WAS Jack."
You can only use the present tense when you are connecting the fact to some present or future situation.
"One day, a fox saw a lion. The lion IS big, and the fox is worried that the lion is still out there."
"I met a man yesterday. His name IS Jack. I think we are going to be great friends."