Madonna Badger Speaks At Funeral For 3 Daughters Killed In Christmas Blaze

NEW YORK (CBSNewYork) — An emotional Madonna Badger spoke Thursday at the funeral for her three daughters killed in the horrific Christmas morning fire in Stamford, Conn.

Hundreds attended the funeral Mass for 9-year-old Lily Badger and 7-year-old twins Sarah and Grace, including fashion designer Calvin Klein and other luminaries of the fashion and advertising world.

1010 WINS’ Juliet Papa reports

Madonna and Matthew Badger, the girls’ father, held hands and cried as they watched the caskets carrying the remains of their three daughters get carried into St. Thomas Episcopal Church in Manhattan.

The two shared a brief hug after the three matching mahogany caskets were carried in.

Eighteen Stamford firefighters who had responded to the blaze were the pallbearers.

Madonna’s Badger’s boyfriend, Michael Borcina, who investigators believe may have accidentally started the lethal blaze, stood behind the two. Authorities said the embers, left in a bag in the mudroom of the home, may have been the catalyst of the tragedy.

Parents’ Final Farewell

Inside the church, Madonna Badger stood before more than 1,000 mourners and poured out a heartfelt eulogy for her girls. She called Lily “my angel and my life… Her smile was sometimes hidden, but when she let her smile glow, it glowed forever.”

Photo Gallery: Funeral For Stamford Fire Victims

She called Sarah “my little whippersnapper, lovable and full of love… She used to lie with me at night, hold my hand and tell me how much she loved me.”

As for her twin, Grace, her mother recalled her “tender kisses were only given when she wanted to give them.”

“Gracie asked me a thousand times if she was going to die before me. I said ‘No Grace, that’s never going to happen,’ but that did happen,” she recounted.

badgerfuneral Madonna Badger Speaks At Funeral For 3 Daughters Killed In Christmas Blaze

(credit: Kristin Thorne/CBS 2)

“And she cried and the whole place cried. It was just beautiful. When she talks about love and service and describes each of the kids, they’re all characters,” said Kevin Sullivan, who has known Madonna Badger for three years.

“I was very surprised that she had the strength and courage to get up to speak, but I ‘m glad she did,” family friend Jan Pakulski said.

The mayor of Stamford, Michael Pavia, also attended the funeral. He said Badger started the healing for the grief-stricken community when she took to the podium.

“When Madonna Badger left the pew and walked up to the podium to speak, it was probably the most moving thing I’ve seen,” he said. “No one can believe after all this woman has gone through that she would have the strength and courage to do that.”

Matthew Badger, the father of Lily, Grace and Sarah, was overcome with grief, so Rev. William Shillady read some of the father’s thoughts about his loss.

About his oldest, Lily, Badger wrote “a day with Lily was like a day with a beautiful song.”

“Grace, she was an individual to the core. She was a force of creative nature,” the pastor read.

As for Sarah, Matthew Badger wrote that “her love was so abundant and vibrant. It would welcome anyone into its grasp. She saw the goodness in all of us.”

img 20120105 00448 Madonna Badger Speaks At Funeral For 3 Daughters Killed In Christmas Blaze

People entering St. Thomas Church for funeral of Badger family (credit: Juliet Papa/1010 WINS)

Mourners started arriving at around 10:30 a.m. for the “Service in Thanksgiving for the Lives of Lilian, Sarah and Grace Badger,” 1010 WINS’ Juliet Papa reported. Rufus Wainwright sang “Over the Rainbow” as part of the service.

As the funeral procession made its way down Fifth Avenue, people who didn’t know the family paused for a moment to show their respect and support.

The victims died of smoke inhalation. Grandparents Lomer and Pauline Johnson also died in the blaze. The grandfather suffered blunt trauma to the head and neck likely resulting from a fall while trying to save his granddaughters.

The Johnsons were to be cremated.

Mourning At Home

A steady stream of mourners filed by the home in Stamford where the girls and their grandparents lost their lives.

Cove, Conn., resident Holly Kalinowski and her 4-year-old daughter laid roses outside the rubble of the Stamford home.

“Right now they’re in heaven with the angels,” Kalinowski said. “I just couldn’t imagine, I couldn’t imagine.”

Even though they didn’t know the Badger family, they said they came to pay their respects on the day of the funeral.

Karen McLane drove from her job in Greenwich to visit the growing memorial of toys, rosaries, candles and flowers.

“I felt compelled because I’m a mom and I can’t imagine this happening to anyone. It’s very tragic,” McLane said.

“I was just called to come and bring blessings to the family for emotional comfort and prayers,” said Lisa Starr, who was in town from southern California, visiting family.

Healing From Loss

“God is love and God is everything. I have been asked a million times ‘How are you doing? How will you survive this?’ but here I am, here all of us are,” Madonna Badger said at the podium. “In all this incomprehensible loss and chaos, all I can hang on to is love. Lily, Sarah and Grace live in my heart now.”

Psychologist Erica Chin said Madonna Badger’s grief, guilt and anger will come in waves in the years ahead.

“Trying to have regular meals, eating, sleeping, those things are things that will slowly build the building blocks of building a new life,” Chin said.

“Life will come back again, but that may not come back again, the past isn’t going to necessarily come rushing back, but life will come back.”

Madonna Badger’s friends told CBS 2’s Kathryn Brown they believe she will recover.

“I think she’s going to make it. She has a lot of strength this lady, a remarkable person,” Martin Schneit said.

“The service was beautiful. Madonna was amazing,” added Phoebe Cole-Smith.

A foundation has been established to honor the memories of the Badger girls. The mission of the Other 364 Foundation is to champion compassion, according to its website.

Please leave a comment below…

  • Samantha

    This pay the piper person is not for real. He is hired by this board to stir the pot for thier own profits. To generate more hits for the site. In very poor taste. Who ever instigated the post is generating mega bad karma.

  • Suzanne

    This photo makes me feel so much pity for the parents but the Dad of the girls especailly. He seems so weak and so vulnerable. he couldn’t give his own eulogy so the priest read it for him. he is just like the little girls – he has a very fragile heart. I wonder why they got separated and then getting divorced now. wonder what caused it? being married to such a successful and strong woman had to be tough on him. he seems really grounded. did anyone else think he looked so pale today in the photos? he looks like a part of his died too. like a zombie in a waking dead movie. his photo with the girls from a few weeks ago showed a different man. this guy is in trouble from a mental stand point i think. he really is going to need a lot of help and support. sometimes, sadly enough, parents just end up getting sick themselves after such tragedy. you know someone is going to write a screen play and make a movie out of this. i just know it. and madonna will be the producer or consultant. just a wild guess.

  • Pay the Piper Madonna Badger

    Love aka Liza aka Amazin

    I stand by my belief that Ms.Badger is now looking to garner sympathy and $$$ or today’s funeral service would have been a private one. Are you familiar with the Frank Campbell Funeral home where the private service was held yesterday? If not look it up. This is the funeral home of celebrities and the rich and famous. Everything was done to keep this a media story. I want Ms.
    Badger off my tv, out of newspapers and out of sight. My prediction is in 2-3
    weeks she will be sitting across from Diane Sawyer or Ann Curry discussing “her
    strength” “staying positive”, her “girl tribe” her “incomprehensible loss and of
    course her foundation.

    • May

      You’re a mean son of a bitch!

      • Pay the Piper Madonna Badger

        And you are one of the sheeple out there. ” Never waste a crisis”

  • Samantha

    You are an idiot. Do you think she really cares about pr? I am amazed by how some people are lacking a soul like the person who made this comment. Her concern is not pr its how to get through the day.

  • Love

    What’s wrong Piper? You are one insecure, hateful, sick “person”. Check yourself into a psych ward asap. I don’t know a PR genius. I know a woman who has lost her 3 children and her parents and is in unbearable pain, as well as the father of these 3 beautiful children who tragically lost their life. There is no PR you MORON, it’s called HUMANITY of people (friends, family and strangers) caring about this grief stricken family. Sounds like you paid the piper you lonely souless piece of dust.

  • Crystal

    pay what piper? She sharhed the setiment becuase it haunts her when flight 800 crashed in 1996, there was an article about the victims (Gbtd) . There was a french class that was going on a class trip to Paris and one the victims was quoted as saying she wanted or believed she would die before forty. Why did someone say that because it was sad. There’s no blame to place no of you eople casting doubt on this has any facts that indicate that this was not an accident. Three children and their grandparents died on Christmas day that is going to get attention. Why are you criticizing her? She doesn’t need PR. Decent people give her sympathy because its the right thing, not because Calvin Klein is there. I think people are harsh because she had money.

  • Amazed

    NYC *is* their hometown; Madonna Badger and the girls had only lived in CT for the last year. Matthew Badger still lives in NYC. Are you really implying that this woman is trying to blame her own children for their deaths?? Wow…the foundation they are setting up is spot on – compassion is obviously in short supply with some people. What on earth is wrong with you, picking apart a grieving mother’s eulogy and the location of the funeral service and snidely referring to her as “the PR genius” – ? You seem to be enjoying yourself, which is just sick. My guess is that you are either trying for shock value out of some pathetic need for attention or you are a truly miserable individual. Either way, I feel sorry for you.

    • Pay the Piper Madonna Badger

      The foundation they are setting up is bogus at this time. Any $$$ they get can be used for whatever. While they are working toward setting up this charity it would be very simple to set up a bank account under the name of the charity and have the checks made out to that account and deposited into that account in the meantime. Ms. Badger’s website leaves out such details….on purpose so as not to need to report the $$$$. I did not name her the PR genius, her industry did. “You have to come through with a strong piercing image that says it all”, Madonna Badger. Are YOU enjoying yourself? Do you feel for the girl’s father? I am saying what many people are thinking but are too gutless to post. I want Ms. Badger off my tv, out of newspapers, and out of sight. This story needs to go away already. Save your sorrows for her children and parents.

      • Amazed

        Here’s a suggestion for you: Don’t read any stories about this tragedy or watch them on TV. Duhhh. That’s how you keep it “out of sight” for yourself.

        Of course, I suspect you’re scouring the Internet looking for anything you can find on this so you can post your b.s. You’re obsessed with it, aren’t you? Get help.

        And btw, I feel very badly for the girls’ father, Matthew. He has suffered a horrible, horrible loss…yet he was standing there holding onto the girls’ mother. I doubt your comments would be of comfort to him; quite the contrary.

        YOU need to go away already.

        • Amazed

          My post above is directed to “Pay the Piper.”

  • xxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxx

    something is very fishy with this women and that boyfriend.the police need to look hard at what ever evidence has not been destroyed by these two and look at the insurance policy’s on all the dead

    • Jill

      Are you kidding me? This woman just lost her three precious daughters and parents and you think something is fishyt with her? You disgust me…have some common decent human compassion for her and the profound loss she has sufferred. You are what is wrong with sociiety today.

  • disbelief

    I am a teacher who knows this family from preschool. They are a hard-working, solid, honest, loving, wonderful family. I can’t believe the things people are posting about PR savvy, motives, fundraising, etc. These people are grieving from the depths of the deepest canyon. I don’t know all the details of this horrible tragedy, but I do know that Madonna and Matthew loved their children more than anything, and I, too — as another poster wrote — am scared and shocked at the depravity represented on this board. This was a horrible, horrible accident.

    • Love

      Thank you, Disbelief May Madonna, Matthew and all of their family find the love, strength and courage to get through this. May they be protected from such awful thoughts and comments posted here. So sad to see such heartless, accusatory, false comments by complete strangers. Love is powerful and yes that is what will prevail from this and live on~compassion and love for others. Thank you Badger Family that in receiving such outpourings you have decided to establish a fund that will be put to use to encourage compassion in this world. May peace be in and all around you in the difficult days ahead.

    • Ro

      I too have been shocked at the indecent comments regarding this tragedy. But in honor of this family who have loss so much, I pray that God will forgive and help these insensitive people realize how crazy their words sound. They need to seek forgiveness and change their behavior. You are poor lost souls who revel in producing a shock effect. Well, you have gotten nothing but disdain and garnered disgust from us who will pray for the souls of that lost family.

    • Jayne Marquit

      I am glad to hear from someone like you because maybe this mom is just not representing herself like the middle class mom would. I would not hesitate to feel the utmost compassion for her if she did not cling to this boyfriend who in effect started the fire that resulted in the loss of five lives, by doing something incredibly stupid. I don’t like that they are insinuating in some way that the kids were the ones who wanted the ashes discarded so Santa would be safe, Badger and her beau are adults and could have easily made up a story about how Santa is never harmed in the fireplace. This mom was NOT divorced and yet she had a beau sleeping over on the one most important family night of the year. I just think that she lost her 3 precious children because she felt she had to have a boyfriend or something and so got mixed up with this guy that didn’t even put smoke detectors in the house. She and he were both negligent so she shouldn’t ask why this happened to her children. When my daughter had birthday parites as a child, I would light candles on the cake and then make sure the candles were drowned in water before I ever even considered going to bed. If my children and parents had perished like that, I would never want to see Borcina again. He made a statement that they were trying to be positive. That should have been enough for her. To a mom looking in from the outside, he makes her look bad.

      • Love

        Jayne you are casting an enormous amount of judgement wiith a mighty big stone. Why don’t you email them directly and say that? Many of the comments on this blog post regarding this family’s tragic loss are outrageous an inhumane. While you are being so “honest” about someone you do not even know anything about, why don’t you get honest about yourself. Please! Hypocrites!

        • Jayne Marquit

          I have been a single mother for 19 years and I sure don’t have the money this woman has, but I have also not entertained random men in my home. I know she allowed this stranger to burn down her house by doing something foolish, and then was disrespectful enough to bring that clown to her innocent chldren’s funeral. That reflected very badly on her in the eyes of single mothers who put their children first every single day. I feel badly for her, but I think it would be best if she acknowledged her mistake so that others could learn from it instead of being in complete denial. If I found two little girls in a fire like Borcina claims he did, I would have picked one up under each arm and carried them out, they would not have had a chance to bolt away. His story is weak at best. The agony those five people went through seems to have been forgotten now and the mom is the victim, but the truth is, the five people dead are the real victims. I hope justice will be served for them.

      • Sophia Renee

        Your point about Santa is well taken in that – it would be easy to explain why one would leave he ashes/embers in the fireplace – I have been thinking about this since this story broke. Santa always had ashes from the Chimney and fireplace on him as per the story ‘Twas the Night before Christmas (read paragraph 2 please!)

        and then, in a twinkling, I heard on the roof
        the prancing and pawing of each little hoof.
        As I drew in my head and was turning around,
        down the chimney St. Nicholas came with a bound.

        He was dressed all in fur, from his head to his foot,
        and his clothes were all tarnished with ashes and soot.
        A bundle of toys he had flung on his back,
        and he looked like a peddler just opening his pack.

  • Jayne Marquit

    I just read parts of the eulogy and why were these children so preoccupied with death? I felt so sorry for the mom of these little girls until she showed up at the wake and the funeral with her boyfriend who they say started the fire. The part of the eulogy where she went on and on about how Sarah told her how much she loved her seemed false to me, especially when in the next breath she made it seem like Grace was the complete opposite. Borcina looks and acts like a thug. He is even friends with himself on facebook. And the part of the eulogy about Sarah’s popularity at school was really self-indulgent. The Windward School must cater to popular kids since Badger claims the principal had to set up a schedule of when each kid could have the privilege of hanging out with Sarah. The whole eulogy seemed off to me and with the boyfriend holding on to her shoulder while she cried why did this happen to my children, I can’t muster much sympathy, since he is the one with at the very least incredibly bad judgement. My heart goes out to the little girls lost and the grandparents who sacrificed their lives in an attempt to save them. If Badger keeps the beau, she has zero credibility with me.

    • Paul


      you are nuts and your post is self indulgent at the very least-

    • Sophia Renee

      When I was a little kid, I used to lay awake at night in my bed, scared to go to sleep because I thought when people slept, they were actually dead – and I was truly scared if I let myself go to sleep I might not wake up. It was called anxiety and even very young children can have it. I know that I certainly did. I would lie awake for hours crying in my room because I was too afraid to tell anyone and afraid I would die. I was only 5 or so at the time. My Mother brought me to the Pediatrician to have me checked out and he gave me clean bill of health….but still, I didn’t believe him and thought I had to hold my hand on my heart to be sure it was still beating and let anyone know when it may have stopped beating. As crazy as this sounds, I really thought I was going to die. This went on for several years – and it may have been linked to as slight arrythmia in my heart which was only picked up years down the road but most likely I was told it was panic attacks and anxiety conditions that young children are very prone to – especially kids who suffer some sort of trauma or separation anxiety as youngsters (as in divorce or separation of their parents for example). One night, before bed I said to my Mother that I was afraid that she might die before me and I was very scared of that too. She became very impatient and had had enough of my fears and obsessions with dying. So she said to me flat out “the only reason you are afraid of me dying before you is that you are worried who will take care of you if I’m gone…and that’s selfish thinking…” As I lay there stunned, because that didn’t even cross my 8 year old mind at the time, I got angry and upset with her for turning my innocent thoughts into a totally different perspective, calling my thoughts “selfish”. From that point on, I became more angry at my Mother and had a new diversion in my thought process. I was soon too mad at her to worry about dying. I was more worried about how I was going to survive under the same roof for another 10 years with her. Today we do not have a good relationship at all. We don’t even talk anymore. Not because of that incident but because of so many subsequent wrongs. I no longer fear dying either. But I will say, before there was a time in my life where I loved my mother so much, that I could not bear to think of my life or living without her in my life. I suspect that Madonna had such an enormously tight and loving bond with all of her daughters that they felt the same way: scared to live with out her and frightened about the prospect of being separated from her in any way. The manager of the Yacht Club where she was a new member said he never saw her apart from her girls. They were always together. They did everything together. They lived as one “tribe”. It will be very hard for her to go back to living a singular life. No man or pet or career or friendship will ever be able to fill the void of what she has lost. Someone said that her life is over……and in many ways, as sad as it sounds, it is true. Sure she can go on and do great things in her daughters memory. But life can never go back to the raw beauty that it once was just two short weeks ago. She was at the APEX of her life. She had it all. And in an instant, it was all taken away from her, Her kids, her parents, her home and her dog as well as all of her possessions. All gone. Humans don’t recover from this. It’s a mother’s heart that is broken this time and she will experience the anxiety and fear of being alone again, like her children may have also experienced. They say the worst thing that can happen to a parent is to have to bury a child. Madonna has had to bury 3 children in one day. This is something that even women in war torn countries rarely have to do. This is the equivalent of being in a car accident where everyone dies, your kids and your parents but you survive. As for her Contractor/boyfriend. I heard that he had been battling brain cancer a few years back and this is why he is so bald today. The compassionate side of me wonders if he made many errors due to his brain trauma. He does not seem to be all that intelligent or even bright. This is why I have a hard time understanding what Madonna ever saw in him. Sadly, one only wonders that if Matthew and Madonna had made their marraige work, none of this might have happened. It probably would never have happened. Sometimes, when we alter the course of history, life alters our plans too. I agree that Mr. Borcina is not worth holding onto. She should let him go and I sense she probably will when she is ready to let another person go from her life. Right now, she is needy and vulnerable and it is too much to ask a grieving mother to have to be alone at such a difficult time. Allow her to do things on her own time, when she is ready. She needs to come to the conclusions that most of us can see as outsiders on her own terms. Give that little bit of dignity in life. All she is left with is herself. For the sake of her kids, she is their mother after all, please give this woman as much support and compassion as you can gather up. This is a human tragedy and she loved her daughters with all her heart. That is obvious.

      • Jayne Marquit

        No, she is not alone, she is still on the arm of the man who caused the fire. How she can even stand to look at him is more than I can understand.

    • Marc

      Hey Jayne – you’re not nuts. See my comment, below. However, I think it’s important that those of us who feel frustration allow Mrs. Badger to grieve and take action the way she wants to, IMHO. It’s harder to feel compassion for people who do things we think we can see through… believe me, I know!

  • J Gillette

    OMG What is the matter with people. Is it that posts are anonymous that people can write such despicable things about 3 children being incinerated? I’m at a loss for words. Why does CBS allow comments like this after such a tragedy ?

    • Marc

      I think it’s because of the children/grandparents that posters are upset and very passionate. I don’t agree with all “Pay the Piper” says, but s/he seems like a person who understands PR. I feel horrible for Mrs. Badger… but the Santa/ashes story (when there are photographs of the girls sitting on their grandfather’s/Santa’s lap? And were already asleep at 3:30 am when the ashes were cleared?) and the contractor walking behind Mr. Badger today makes me think, as many people have expressed… that something feels wrong here.

      I know this sounds horrible, but maybe it was Mrs. Badger who put the ashes outside? She is grieving and in shock, and perhaps not making the best decisions right now. I am not the most sophisticated person, but I do know how PR works, and you have to be incredibly smart to have everyone agree with your perception of yourself and your version of events. So I do understand where “Pay the Piper” is coming from… and if true, it doesn’t make Mrs. Badger a “bad” person; it makes her more human, as it would take a truly strong person to resist trying to make themselves look better amidst this horror that will take years to get through. And if Mrs. Badger wants to throw her energy into taking this tragedy and doing something positive that will make her feel better, then I can’t blame her.

  • liz

    Whoever you are (I mean whatever you are) you are a SICK PUPPY = unfortunately idiots like you are out there and have the audacity to take up a message board with such crap when this woman just lost her children and her parents – such horror is unimaginable. May those that are lost RIP and those that remain find comfort in love. And whatever you are, I pray for your tortured soul.

  • Wellsley

    You are in my prayers! God please take care of this family and please know that your children are with your mom and dad in God’s arms. This poem says a lot and hope you can find comfort in this,

    “I will not be far away, for life goes on
    So if you need me, call and I will come
    Though you cannot see or touch me, I will be near
    And if you listen with your heart, you will hear
    All of my love around you soft and clear”

  • Pay the Piper Madonna Badger

    Liza – I do not need your sorrow. And I am not preaching hatred, just saying what I believe to be true. When Ms.Badger posted the donation request or approved posting the donation request on her website she opened the door to have her motives scrutinized. I feel for the children, grandparents, and Matthew Badger. This entire story left me with doubts from day one. She had a duty to protect those kids above all else. Today was her big “celebutard” media day. May it be her last one in the spotlight. The father was so grief stricken, the reverend spoke for him.

    • LIZA

      Of course it is a mother’s duty to protect her children. And to think she deliberately neglected them is nonsense. Accidents happen. It was stupid for sure. To think she has motives to raise money when she’s probably delirious with grief just does not make sense to me. I don’t understand what “big celebutard media day” means. She’s in PR/Fashion & has contacts with many including Calvin Klein with whom she’s seems to have worked with. She lives in an expensive neighborhood & sends her kids to private school. She donated $ to Obama…What does any of this matter? I am just not getting your angle at all…It seems it is you who perhaps wants the attention by making outrageous assumptions/accusations for someone who don’t even know. I will take back my sorrow because clearly see things differently than most human beings that I know…Peace be with you regardless…

      • V

        Go Liza!!!!!!!

      • Jill

        Agreed!! It boggles my mind that people cannot have compassion and profound sympathy for a woman who lost her three precious children and parents. My heart breaks for her and Mr. Badger. The foundation she has set up is right on… champion compassion everyday….something the people on these boards could use a heatthy dose of!!!!!!!!!

    • Samantha

      You obviously dont have kids or care about another person in the world. I will pray for you and people like you. I almost dont beieve you are for real. Any human would know this woman could suffer no greater pain than losing her entire family in such a way and money is the very last thing on her mind. To even comment on mrs badgers tragedy is hard to do as it is so overwelmingly sad.

    • Kate

      I hope that this family is able to filter out the negative comments and questions, and that they have someone to shield them from all of it. I can’t imagine what they’re going through. They showed courage and fortitude today, but in the days, weeks, months, and years ahead, none of us will ever know their private moments.

    • Kate

      I think your comments are despicable…who in their right mind seeks the spotlight at a moment like this? How can this family prevent the media from writing about them, or taking photos? You’re out of your mind, really. And, as for donations, I’ve been to two funerals recently, and as with many funerals, donations (in lieu of or in addition to flowers) were offered as an option. One family asked for donations for a hospice, and the other for an animal shelter. If you think there’s something craven about suggesting a charity, then you are a true cynic. Most people hearing about this family would like to help; family and friends would like to do something practical or symbolic. Being able to donate is another expression of their heartfelt sympathy.

      • Jill


  • KS

    You are absolutely sick. What is your problem? She lost her three children and her parents in a matter of moments. Are you even human?

  • LIZA

    I truly feel sorry for you because you are preaching hatred towards a family in deep mourning. Are all wealthy people bad & looking to outsmart you? Whether she is wealthy or not is truly irrelevant as bad things happen even to the all mighty wealthy. To think that anyone would use this tragic accident as a PR stunt is outrageous from my perspective. I have a real world education, am proud to have a successful career and am a mother of 2 loving teenagers. I’m not sure what kind of world you live in, if you have kids or have ever experienced such unthinkable loss, but my heart actually goes out to as your hostility sounds painful to me.

  • Devra

    Peace and a strength that can only be from God at a time like this be with all who loved Lily, Sarah and Grace and their grandparents. I care and will continue to pray for you all.

  • benzbolmer

    To.. Mrs. Badger, and the father ,family and friends,,and all that helped to save your little -ones..I am here now and will be here the rest of my life to support you all. in any way that I can that will ease your pain.,i feel the pain you all are going through and want you all to know.. I love ya all..and You all will be in my prayers forever..Dona

  • NYC Gal

    My heart goes out to those 3 little angels in heaven.

  • Amazed

    You mean you stand by your numerous posts – plural – since you’ve posted the same garbage all over the place. YOU need to check into the psych ward, asap!

  • LIZA

    Your feedback is simply outrageous & hurtful when a poor mother just lost her whole family. You should be ashamed for yourself for thinking such thoughts…Sounds like you have a real chip on your shoulders…Just the way I see it..

  • Mayor Ed Koch's Masoleum

    Kind of odd ,that we should all know from the press all the famous
    people that attended the funeral,must be like an opening night.
    This family was killed by their own stupidity ,but Publicity Relations
    is a profession where one lies legally to sell something and now it is
    the cute kids & Santa-Grandpa that were killed by ……well U know.
    Shame on the Stanford CT firefighters for becoming part of this show.
    Nah, “You can’t write stuff like this”.
    Some grieving family doing PR spin control.

  • lulu

    when the prye goes up in flames the second danger has passed. Vergil’s Aeneid. Or its something out of Medea by Euripeides. Terrible tradgedy.

    • lulu

      (SIDE NOTE) This is from another lulu, not me – I am the lulu that wrote posts yesterday that make sense . Not that it matters but I just wanted to clear my name, I have no idea why they used my name for this post….

  • Pay the Piper Madonna Badger

    Hey Marci Z – Stick your head back into your Doritos bag and forget about everything else you sappy sympathizer. This was not an accident, it was pure negligence. The house was not up to building code and should not have had people on the 2nd and 3rd floors. The contractor boyfriend genius disconnected the main alarm system. Ms. Badger was not smart enough to install some temporary $20 smoke detectors, but she was savvy enough to donate $14,000 to Obama!. She and the boyfriend did not call 911. They removed the embers from the fireplace and put them in a bag in the mudroom of a 100 year old WOODEN house. She put those children and her parents in harm’s way and now wants to cash in so she can regain her status in the Fashion and Advertising world. The children were trophys and the boyfriend was needed to feed her ego and complete her perfect picture. Civil lawsuits are next. And more information about what hard driving perfectionists Borcina and Ms.Badger were..

    • Amazed

      How “savvy” does one have to be to donate to a political candidate?? Also, someone who can afford a $1.7 million dollar home, expensive private school tuition and who has her own successful business is hardly likely to try and “cash in” on her daughters’ deaths. And this may come as a shock, but the wealthy do suffer and grieve…this poor woman just lost everything – her children, her parents, her home and everything in it – and you call her opportunistic??

      Go take your meds now…you’re out of control.

  • Joe Lagares

    There are some good thoughts and some nonsense post galore…I believe that this incident truly was an (airhead) accident. But let’s be logical here. I am of the school that whether this was an old or new house, negligence took preeminence. How can a (would be high end) contractor be so dumb and take the still hot embers (coal) and put them in a bag and then leave them inside the house…It’s hard to believe that he is a chemistry major, but non the less, he is not a child either and because he is not a child and because he was in charge of construction (even though it was after work hrs.) he should be responsible for the dead lives. I’m certain that if he would had taken ashes out side I wouldn’t be posting this right now…Who are we kidding here, word got out today that borcina removed ashes from t the fire place so that santa wouldn’t get burn…how sad, that all this perhaps happened because the adults never told the kids the truth about phony santa. I hope that no one ever dies this type of death over the lie that is santa claus. Either way moroncina should be charged.

  • Mister mister

    Good job by the firefighters saving the family,but an even better job by drinking in your uniforms after the service. Firefighters=losers I

  • Marci Z

    I just came across these comments and I am actually in shock over some of the posts. Who ARE these people? How can someone criticize a mother after such a horrendous tragedy? It was a tragic accident, and one she will have to live with for the rest of her life. People make mistakes which is how and why accidents happen. It sickens me that people in this country can be so cruel and unsympathetic. It is one of the saddest stories I have ever heard of, and you morons should keep your mouth shut and your asinine onions to yourself because you are an embarrassment to the human race. She will most likely spend the rest of her life blaming herself for the “If Only’s” and doesn’t need idiots pointing fingers at her. You people really need to get a life and stop watching too many reality shows and Nancy Grace!

    • Victoria

      Thank you for posting this. As a friend of Madonna’s I’m sickened to what I have read here. She does not deserve this and has been through enough not to mention what she will continue to go through. She needs our love and support more than ever now.

      • AL K. HOLIC

        SO WHATS YOURE SECRET?????????????/

    • Jill

      My thoughts exactly…….

  • The Lord

    Absolutely, like holding up both middle fingers to the CEO-class and screwing in a damp sleeping bag.

  • kevin

    Let them have their peace in resting their beloved family eternally today. This is very sad as is all tragedies like this whether rich or poor. I only hope law enforcement goes after this Borcina character asap.

    • Seeing Red

      I doubt that anything will happen to Borcina. The mom and the boyfriend will live happily ever after. See how fast the house was torn down? I doubt that 5 more people would have died if the city of Stamford left it standing for a proper forensic investigation. Ms. Badger pays approximately $30,000 per year in property taxes there. Money talks and B_ walks.

      • LIZA

        I do not agree that the boyfriend & she will live happily ever after. No amount of money will ever replace the loss any mother would feel from losing her entire family. We should be sending the family love & compassion instead of hurtful & unfounded angry feedback. I feel sad for all those of you here who are expressing such hateful judgement when a family is mourning a deep loss. Simply shameful. Where is our humanity!

  • Nancy Grace

    LIZA – You doubt that the mother set up the donation idea, that friends or family did it. If she did not want the funds sent to her she can surely ask one of her “highly successful” agency friends to reomove the request. Tthe mom’s name is the primary name on the website and the checks should be sent c/o Badger & Winters Group. The mother was reckless in every possible way and put her children in danger by living in an old wooden house without any smoke alarms on an upstairs floor far from her love nest/master suite.

    • LIZA

      As a mother, I doubt that this is what I’d be focused on but then again I am not in her shoes. Perhaps, she feels that if she or friends/family does something constructive that it would somehow help cope with the loss. Who are we to judge? Clearly, this was not an intentional outcome. They seem like they were a typical loving & caring family who made some tragic decisions. Do people really believe that this is a publicity stunt!

  • DanTe

    This whole “accident” smells like unwashed feet. HOT embers are placed in PAPER bag. Mother and boyfriend miraculously survives, but baggage/kids fry. Now they’re blaming it on Santa Clause – he didn’t want his footsies burnt coming down the chimney. Just how much insurance were on the kids and house?

  • ace11

    Why is the Boyfriend standing right behind them, at the funeral??

    This whole story is creepy

    Wonder if she had something to do with having him start the fire??

    Maybe for insurance money?

    It’s sad he rfamily had to pay the price beacuse of it

    • Devenio

      Okay you fake Colombo wanna-be – you’ve solved the crime! . She just lost her kids and parents. And think people would do that for money? You must have had some real winners for parents if you think that way. Human nature can me messed up but what you’re implying is pure evil.

      • nymom

        Its sad to say but evil is alive and well in this world and something is not right with this whole story. God bless those beautiful angels and their loving grandparents. I hope the authorities get to the bottom of this.

    • Schniff D. Tookus

      You tell em’ Ace, keep on snoopin’, make em’ smell your ass. Better yet, you smell their asses and see if something smells fishy!

  • Boosmom

    The home should not have been occupied….period. When the renovations were complete she should have moved her family in. And who puts ANYTHING from a fireplace in a BAG? Near a dwelling? Its true that you cant fix stupid. Now five people had to pay the pay the price.

  • Socrates Hindsight

    Even though the BF contractor was there and tried to help the kids
    that house still had no smoke alarms working,this is a lawyers dream
    case against the BF contractor,an illegal occupancy he should have known
    better.portable smoke alarms cost about 10 bucks. Duh!!!

  • Seeing Red

    See how the media keeps embellishing this story today – now we learn that “luminaries” of the fashion and advertising world plus Calvin Klein attended the service. Another opportunity to keep this story in the limelight.

    • LIZA

      This story seems to have affected me more than most tragedies which I can’t explain. I actually thought I was the only one crying real tears of deep sorrow for this tragic accident & feel us coming together to recognize the value of life & what living in the moment really means. I’m hugging my kids much more over the last few days & have even snuggled with them even though they are teenagers.

      I don’t know how anyone could judge this mother so harshly as an opportunist when she just lost everything that matters in life, especially her 3 precious girls & her parents all in 1 night. I highly doubt that the mother set up the donation which was likely set up by friends/family. It’s outrageous to even suggest lawsuits against the boyfriend/contractor who clearly did not intend for this to happen, nor will it bring the girls back. If she wanted him at the funeral, then who are we to judge otherwise when we are not in her shoes.

      This is no time for hostile negative feedback…Any commentary is better served sending her our love, prayers & strength to carry on…


        WITH LOVE
        NEW JERSEY

  • Chuck Nonews

    The story that never ends. Can we move on or is there REALLY any more to this?

  • Side of the fence your on

    Thousands of children died in Haiti and tens of thousands made
    homeless if not orphans in the 2010 earthquake, nary a sorrow for them
    “Apples and oranges as they say”.

    • Steven

      How wrong you cxould be. There was as much of an outpouring of sadness and sorrow when the happened, not to mention more donations and other assistance.

  • Ellen

    No matter how the fire was started, or who was at fault here, three little girls died along with their grandparents and that was horrible. My prayers go out to the family, mom, and her boyfriend who has to live with this the rest of his life.

  • somwhere in nyc

    Writer needs to use spell check or proofread his work.

  • Donna Skjeveland

    Does not matter if the mom is or is not an egomaniac or has a boyfriend or not. This is still horrendous 3 little girls lost their lives as well as the grandparents who perished. Have some empathy. Other fires are covered in the media of other families almost ever day.

  • Sick of Public Relations

    Hey Bridget – She was a narcisstic, silly woman who never should have put her kids and parents in harms way. The house should not have been occupied, not one smoke alarm in the place. Hope she enjoyed her cozy romatic fire with the boyfriend!

    • Love

      You are sick. Did you read the article on the children’s funeral service that you are commenting on? Do you know the facts? Where you there? I know Madonna and the Badger Family will ensure that great, compassionate actions are done with this foundation.

  • SL

    Interesting posts. I do agree that this story surely got way more coverage than an inner city poor neighborhood story would have. If you associate yourself with the rich and famous like the mother of these children does, then to the media you will be way more important. The rich and famous stick together and could care less about poor people, no matter what they try to tell everyone otherwise.

    On the other hand, it can’t possibly be easy for this women to handle losing 3 kids and both parents. If she knows that she was somehow herself negligent in this incident, it can only make things even worse for her. I do agree that her boyfriend should not have been anywhere near the mother or the father during the wake and funeral. Whether they are divorced, separated or whatever, they ARE the two people who gave these kids life, and the boyfriend has NO place being anywhere near them when they say goodbye to the children. If the mother somehow approved of him being there, then her values and priorities definitely should be questioned.

  • Steven Tyler

    A fireman who carried her off the roof.

  • Sick of Public Relations

    One more thought – the mom needs to go back to the psych ward and stay there until she comes to her senses and dumps the “chatty” boyfriend who said last week ” “We’re going to be okay. We’re just trying to stay positive.” Everything about this guy is suspect. Stay tuned for the civil lawsuits the father will be filing against Borcina’s firm, the town of Stamford, etc. The fact that the mother permitted Borcina to attend the wake and be in the same space with the grieving father makes me sick. Another selfish mother who put her needs first. After all, as Public Relations “genius” she needed to have a boyfriend to complete the picture and keep her ego fed.

    • Devenio

      I feel for the mother but she and her idiot boyfriend should be arrested for being stupid. These are educated people here. I would think that they had an idea that they were in a home without smoke detectors. They had to know as they had no CoO. Yet these mental giants decide to put smoldering cinders in a bag and carry it through the house? Really? Second: There was at no point any evidence that the fire was caused by these cinders. In the “inner-city” there is no way the house would have been destroyed BEFORE an official investigation took place. How do you destroy a potential murder site? Who ordered the home destroyed? The cinder theory came from the boyfriend,. I expect to see criminal charges files any day know.

    • Dave

      You’re an a–hole! Where is your compassion you piece of sh-t! This mother just lost her kids. I only hope that if you find yourself in that same situation, which I hope you do, people can have compassion for your loss you jerk!

    • Bridget

      You are an idiot. From what I have read, the fire was caused by improperly discarded embers (ashes) whatever from the fireplace, not from any work Borcina’s firm did. This was a tragic accident, Borcina tried to save 2 of the children but they bolted an ran upstairs. Just because an accidental fire had tragic results you are saying that they should break up. You are ridiculous in your thought process to think that people with kids should not move on after divorce.

  • lulu

    Have some respect! What is wrong with people like you??? God Forbid something like this happened in your own family how would you feel seeing strangers post pyschotic comments like this! Just keep your mouth shut, haven’t you ever heard if you don’t have anything nice to say don’t say anything at all?? God help your soul…..

    • lulu

      YAY they removed that disgusting comment I was replying to :)

    • theclarkster

      That’s the problem, “lulu”, there is no more respect in todays world! None!

    • Sick of Public Relations

      As long as the mom leaves her donation request for her “personal” charity on her firm’s website do not expect any compassion from me or others. Why don’t you ask God to examine her soul????? She was a narcisstic, silly woman who never should have put her kids and parents in harms way. The house should not have been occupied, not one smoke alarm in the place. Hope she enjoyed her cozy romatic fire with the boyfriend!

      • lulu

        #1 – I was not talking to you or asking for ANYTHING from you or anyone else for that matter. I was replying to the “person” who was commenting about her sex life – come on that is just not normal! The woman is burying her family today and there is someone commenting on who she will be banging next Christmas??? That is just disgusting.

        #2 – you must know her personally to be able to comment on her personality and calling her names?

        This is an awful tragic ACCIDENT, it’s is just very disheartening to see all of these cruel comments. It scares me that there are really people out there like this….

        • Dave

          Lulu, ignore that piece of crap, he’s an idiot who needs to be put on all fours and raped with a broom stick. Maybe then he’ll have some compassion.

          • theclarkster

            Dave, if you’re interested in a “oock”, then just stay away from me!

            • liberalsuck

              Lomer Johnson also suffered blunt trauma to the head .Makes you wonder what was really going on that night.I hope the police are not as inept as the ones in Suffolk county who can not catch a serial killer so now the deaths are ruled drownings

              • Kate

                To “liberalsuck” – It sounds like the father fell through the roof, which was weakened by the fire. On another note, only one death in Suffolk County is thought to be a possible drowning in a marshy area. The other deaths are thought to be homicides. If your feelings of indignation continue to grow, there are so many other outlets than the comments section of this news article. Think about it.

    • Victoria

      Way to go lulu!!!

  • thesis help

    Interesting post, this was really useful. thanks!

  • Victoria

    There is nothing phony about this. Instead of being negative, why don’t you try praying for strength and sending love to this family whom I know and has suffered such a tragic loss.

    • CT Native

      Way to go Victoria! It seems that many of the posters lack empathy.

      • lulu

        It’s truly making me sick to read all of these horrible comments. Let’s just pray for them, that’s all we can do…..

        • Dona

          yes.. mad people out there>>

  • Mary

    I agree with you, nycgal.

  • Nancy

    Well said, nycgal

  • nycgal

    I think this story has gotten enough press already to the point it’s suspicious. WHen poor black people in outer boroughs die in a fire they don’t get this many days of coverage or help. Is there PR behind it? The mother’s firm is asking for donations, yet they don’t explain how to “champion compassion everyday”. Sounds phony. Give the money to the folks who need it.

    • hank

      First, there is enough poor people in the town of Stamford. Ct is not all wealthy. I agree, this story got more air time than most fire stories but most fires do not result in the deaths of five people and usually do happen in lesser areas because of over crowding, poor electrical wiring and multi unit structures. It’s a sad story. I’m not sure what the charity represents either. Maybe to teach compassion? If so, I hope you will take a look at it and learn compassion for others.

      • Sick of Pubkic Relations

        Do not forget who you are dealing with here. The mom is a Public Relations “Genius” She is making sure that this story will be in the news every day, to keep the donations coming. Someone will trikle out tidbits of information daily. The media is a very useful and strong tool, and the mom knows that given her publicity background. The wording about the use of the funds is intentionally vague. Why not donate it to their school in their memory? Almost 2 million dollars was recently raised for the 4 children of a slain police office in NY via a registered legitimate charitable organization. . My heart bleeds for the father of the children. The mom and boyfriend’s negligence is the reason for her loss. She and the boyfriend should face negligent homicide charges, but they will not because Everything about this woman is opportunistic and calculated, including her stay in the psychiatric center, and allowing the boyfriend to attend the wake. He should have stayed home. He needs to be kicked to the curb. Her Facebook photo was changd from a dowdy one to a much more glamorous image only two or three days after the fire, which is a very bizarre. Everything about this story turns my stomach. I also find it odd that the Santa chimney embers explanation was provided to coincide with the day the donation appeal was relaeased……. More Public relations efforts to garner sympathy. Who in their right mind would dispose of hot embers outside of all wooden house? The boyfriend has a bachelors degree in chemistry so he is not some average Joe contractor. Don’t expect anything to come out of the delayed police investigation because this lady pays big property taxes and can afford to give $ 14,000 in donations to Obama, she can also make a big contribution elsewhere to have the investigation come out in her favor. You will not find anyone with the courage to even utter the word negligent homicide. These are the arrogant people that put firefighters in harm’s way. Notice how the media never reveals the cause of most fires? This was a senseless loss that could have been prevented by a “marketing genius” and her contractor boyfriend.. Two highly educated fools!

        • LearnFireSafety

          Agree with ALL your comments on this site. People who question what happened are being criticized, but the only way to prevent more senseless and stupid loss of lives in the future is to be brave enough to unflinchingly look at the chain of events both before and after this fire.

          • LearnFireSafety

            The above post was for Sick of Public Relations.

        • jagriv

          I like your logic, but do not agree with the highly educated comment, these two carelessness resulted in the deaths of five people, three of which are children, educated people are seldom careless.

        • Scott

          Be thankful for your ignorance and the fact you have never lost a child let alone all three. Becuase then you would know, that after a loss of this magnitude, “nothing” else really matters.

          • Sick of Public Relations

            Well if nothing else matters, why the ask for donations? Despite her loss, she still wants to capitalize and collect $$. If this was not the case, the donations would be going to real charity instead of to her PR firm.

            • Gert

              Having lost a little girl in a tragic accident 10 years ago and knowing full well what it feels like I can tell you two things. This was an accident. I look at Ms. Badger’s face and recognize the agony. And secondly, she likely created an organization in the girls name because we look so desperatly for some way ot keeping their memory alive. Everyone is reeling right now. It’s just such a horrific tragedy. You are a sad, synical, bitter individual to think the way you do. I don’t know and don’t care what made you this way but you should address your issues. What a horrible way to live.

          • Samantha

            Scott-i agree.

        • Dave

          Well maybe you should run for mayor and turn things around since you apparently seem to know everything.

    • John

      How true

    • Ellen

      Fell the very same way,

    • Love

      Wow, people are truly self absorbed. It is standard at many funerals to request donations. Because this woman has worked hard and helped many there is an outpouring of love, support and yes, money. They are making sure it is handled properly to go to those who need it. What is wrong with you many of the “people” on this blog comment post. If you do not want to know about it don’t read it and certainly don’t anonymously blog lies. Ignorance is something else.

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