‘Absolutely mind-blowing’: Family of 12-year-old killed in fire embraces community support

Local News

ROCHESTER, N.Y. (WROC) — The 12-year-old boy who died in the Memorial Day house fire on Hague Street will be remembered this weekend. 

Christopher Higgins-Maldonado funeral is Saturday. 

It was just a month ago when a fire engulfed his family’s home. Six members of the family of seven were able to make it out safely, but unfortunately Christopher died from his injuries.

“Christopher had something special about him. I don’t know if I could come up with the words to describe it, but it just grabbed ahold of you and pulled you in,” said James Higgins, Christopher’s uncle. 

Although this month has been hard for Christopher’s family, Higgins says the community has stepped up to carry them through. 

“We’ve received donations, contributions from people all over the country, even people outside the United States have reached out to help,” Higgins said. “It’s absolutely mind-blowing.”

The generosity has been pouring in since the day of the fire. Even the family’s landlord stepped up to help. 

“They got them into another one of their properties, they bought them all brand new beds, stoves, refridgerators, washer, dryer, couch, loves, air conditioner, kitchen table set,” Higgins said. 

People have also been continuously dropping off clothes for the family. 

With Christopher’s funeral coming up on Saturday, his family says it will be tough, but he knows many community members are planning on coming. 

“It feels amazing because it just goes to show how many people want to come and pay their respects, even if it’s just for a couple minutes. It gives us more strength to know that there are so many people out there who care about Christopher and our family and just want to come and show their love and support,” he said. 

While Higgins’ says they are sad the 12-years-old is gone, he has changed their lives forever. 

“The gift that he had also, taught us, a better way to love each other and others. Even now, after him passing, it’s changed our entire family so much in so many different directions,” Higgins said. 

Christopher’s funeral Saturday, June 26, at 10 a.m. and is open to the public. It’s being held at Our Lady of Perpetual Help on Joseph Avenue. 

The cause of the fire has not been released.

A link to support Christopher’s family can be found by clicking here. 

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