Badger family: City says goodbye to young lives lost

From left to right, Grace McCarthy, 7, Sarah Hudson, 7, and Lilian Elizabeth, 9. “Most of all, Lily loved her sisters,” said Madonna Badger. “They were her best friends.”

More than 1,000 people packed inside Midtown’s St. Thomas Church Thursday to pay their respects to three little girls who died in a tragic Christmas Day fire.

Madonna Badger, the grieving mother of Lily, 9, and twins Grace and Sarah, 7, spoke tenderly about her children at a public funeral in their memory.

“I want to remember my girls out loud,” Badger said. “My girls are in my heart. They’re right here, and that’s where they live now.”

Badger, a renowned New York City fashion executive, broke down several times while speaking, but continued despite her tears.

“All they left behind is love,” said Badger.

The girls died in a fire at Badger’s home in Stamford, Conn. The home, which was under renovation at the time, was wired for smoke detectors and alarms, but they hadn’t been installed yet, according to the New York Post.

Matthew Badger, the girls’ father, who is separated from his wife, did not speak, but asked Rev. Dr. William S. Shillady to speak for him.

He described Grace as a “force of creative nature,” Lily like “a beautiful song,” and Sarah as wise beyond her years, a person who “saw the goodness in all of us.”

The Badgers asked that Lily, Grace and Sarah be remembered through acts of service. Each guest was given a donation card for a foundation set up in the girls’ honor, The Other 364 Foundation. Musician Rufus Wainwright sang “Over the Rainbow.”

The funeral was followed by a private burial ceremony in the Bronx.

How did fire start?

The fatal fire occurred in the early morning hours of Christmas Day.

The blaze began from embers Badger and boyfriend Michael Borcina removed from the fireplace after they were up late wrapping gifts on Christmas Eve, fire investigators said.

Borcina removed the ashes at the girls’ request, according to reports, so Santa would not be burned coming down the chimney.

The embers ignited, and only Badger and Borcina were able to escape as the house was destroyed.

Badger’s parents, Pauline, 69, and Lomer Johnson, 71, also perished in the flames. 


Follow Emily Anne Epstein on Twitter @EmilyatMetro.



News
Entertainment
Sports
Lifestyle
Local

Winning $7 million New York lottery ticket sold…

The only $7 million winning New York Lottery ticket for Monday's Cash4Life drawing was sold at a Queens 7-Eleven, officials said on Tuesday.

Local

Brooklyn man charged in roommate's stabbing death

A Brooklyn man accused of violently stabbing his roommate to death on Monday is in police custody and faces murder charges.

International

Dinosaurs could have survived asteroid strike

It turns out there is a good and a bad time for the planet to be hit by a meteor, and dinosaurs were just unlucky.…

National

OkCupid admits to Facebook-style experimenting on customers

By Sarah McBrideSAN FRANCISCO (Reuters) - OkCupid, a top U.S. matchmaking website, intentionally mismatched users to test its technology, the IAC/InterActive Corp service said on…

Movies

Review: 'Child of God' finds director James Franco…

James Franco's 11th directed feature is a noble but sloppy adaptation of Cormac McCarthy's "Child of God," about a feral mountain man (Scott Haze).

Movies

Review: Alex Gibney's Fela Kuti doc 'Finding Fela'…

Prolific documentarian Alex Gibney takes on Afrobeat god Fela Kuti in "Finding Fela," but fails to capture his unique essence.

Gossip

Playing the Field: Valentine's Day coupling edition

  It’s Valentine’s Day, a day created by Hallmark to make couples spend loads and loads of money on candy, flowers and gourmet dinners. Or…

Music

Incubus singer Brandon Boyd on his newest act,…

The rocker is releasing two new passion projects.

College

Playing the Field: Valentine's Day coupling edition

  It’s Valentine’s Day, a day created by Hallmark to make couples spend loads and loads of money on candy, flowers and gourmet dinners. Or…

MLB

Angelo Cataldi: Ryan Howard deserves better from Phillies

Just last week, Ryan Howard endured the embarrassment of a benching that was inevitable, and yet still shocking.

NFL

Larry Donnell has inside track in Giants tight…

Little-known Larry Donnell of Grambling State currently has the inside track, as the second-year player has received the bulk of the first-team reps.

NFL

Computer to Jets: Start Michael Vick over Geno…

Jets general manager John Idzik says the choice of who starts between second-year quarterback Geno Smith and veteran Michael Vick will be a “Jets decision.”

Career

What do you wear to a career fair?…

Getting that gig starts with presenting the most polished and memorable version of yourself, so refer to our expert fashion advice.

Style

Editors pick: Margiela's finger armor ring

These cool rings from Maison Martin Margiela are designed to overlap over the finger, covering each joint like armor.

Style

Givenchy champions diversity

Riccardo Tisci's uses a variety of ethnically diverse ladies for his spring campaign including Erykah Badu.

Wellbeing

Don't settle for the hotel fitness center with…

Travelers who want to skip the hotel fitness center in favor of local gyms that may offer better equipment, classes and amenities can turn to…