NEW YORK (CBSNewYork) — Her name is synonymous with resilience and strength after losing her family in a fire.
Now, Madonna Badger gives the world another reason to look her way, and this time smile along with her, CBS 2’s Vanessa Murdock reported.
Clutching a bouquet of white flowers, smiling from ear to ear, Badger proves life can go on, even after enduring the unimaginable.
It was Christmas morning in 2011 when her idyllic Stamford, Conn. home went up in flames. The fire spread so quickly that her three little girls and both of her parents didn’t make it out.
She described her heartbreaking loss in “Vogue” magazine last November.
“The pain is just so huge that sometimes it feels like a prison cell,” she wrote. “I go to wherever the light is because anything else is darkness.”
Badger went on to write about her engagement to real estate broker William Duke — one of the first people at her hospital bedside that day — announcing plans for a wedding in September.
And a little ahead of schedule, Badger had announced on Facebook that the couple made it official on Wednesday.
“We did it! Bill and I eloped today!” she wrote.
Badger posted two photos documenting the joyous occasion. The happy couple stood on the steps of St. John-St. Matthew Emanuel Lutheran Church in Park Slope, Brooklyn.
Friends commented on the Facebook photos, calling Badger “radiant,” and a “blushing teenage bride.” Others wrote their congratulations to the couple.
Psychiatrist Dr. Anna Yusim said there’s no timetable for dealing with stages of grief, but learning to live again is possible.
“If people are able to open their hearts to love, which she was, able to create good support systems, able to find meaning and purpose, it’s something everyone has the potential to do,” Dr. Yusim said.
And hopefully Badger can find it as Mrs. William Duke, Murdock reported.
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