The fire that destroyed a Flanders home Monday and claimed the lives of 52-year-old Hesham Moustafa and his 7-year-old stepson Cristiano Bonner is only the beginning of the trial for the family as they are struggling to find funds for burial expenses for the victims and recovery for the survivors, said Amy Bonner Langdo.
Langdo is a Hopatcong resident and Cristiano's aunt and has started a Give Forward donation page in hopes of raising enough money to cover the medical, burial and counseling expenses.
"My niece Bianca is in the hospital with burns and damage to her lungs," Langdo said.
According to Langdo, her niece was brought out of the burning home and wasn't breathing, but that first responders were able to revive her at the scene.
Langdo's brother Robert Bonner is the father of Bianca and Cristiano.
"My brother was divorced from their mother, but lived down the street from them," Langdo said.
According to Acting Morris Prosecutor Frederic M. Knapp, the cause of the fire that destroyed Moustafa's first-floor apartment and the apartment above it is still under investigation. Mount Olive Councilman John Mania told the Star-Ledger a space heater may have been in use in the building before the fire started.
Langdo hopes that the community will find it in them to help her brother's family in this difficult time.
"They are in great need of donations to help with expenses," Langdo said.