Today, the NY Times publishes a terribly sad photograph of the three little girls who died inside their Stamford, Connecticut home during a Christmas Day fire. In the picture, the girls, 7-year-old twins Grace and Sarah and 9-year-old Lily, are with their father Matthew Badger, smiling and happy. According to the Times, funeral arrangements are still being made, but it's expected that they will take place next week. The Frank E. Campbell Funeral Home's vice-president, Dominic Carella, said the girls would be placed in individual coffins.

On Christmas Eve, the three sisters were staying with their mother, Madonna Badger (who was separated from her husband), grandparents, and their mother's boyfriend, contractor Michael Borcina, in the $1.725 million home with views of the Long Island Sound. Around 3 a.m., after the kids and grandparents were in bed, Borcina apparently emptied out the still-smolding embers from the fire into a bag and placed it either in the mudroom or in an outdoor trash enclosure. From there, a fire ignited the three-story Victorian and by 5 a.m., when firefighters were on the scene, they were only able to save Madonna Badger, who was on second floor scaffolding trying to reach her daughters, and Borcina, who had to be restrained from re-entering the house.

The flames were too intense for the firefighters to enter, and one firefighter who tried to get close had second-degree burns on his face. Stamford Fire & Rescue Deputy Chief William Smith said during the firefighters' attempts to look for victims on the second floor, "The fire was just raging out there, like if you opened the door up to a furnace in your basement."

The three girls and their grandmother Pauline Johnson died of smoke inhalation (the grandmother's body was found on the stairs between the second and third floors, with one of the twins under her, apparently trying to protect the girl from the heat and smoke) while grandfather Lomer Johnson died from blunt trauma to the head and neck—he fell through a second floor roof while trying to save Lily. Madonna Badger was released from the hospital a day after the fire while Borcina was released yesterday morning.

Stamford officials do not expect to press any criminal charges.