The fire is out and the funerals have passed.
Now what healing is possible for the family of Hesham Moustafa, 52, and his 7-year-old stepson Cristiano Bonner who perished in last month’s house fire has begun. Cristiano's sister, 9-year-old Bianca Bonner, and their mother, Carmella Moustafa, also were injured. Carmella Moustafa was released from the hospital while Bianca Bonner is recovering in St. Barnabus after being revived at the scene.
Acting Morris County Prosecutor Fredric M. Knapp said that altered wiring in the foyer caused a space heater fire at 56 Main Street in Flanders with fatal results.
Bianca and Cristiano’s aunt, Hopatcong resident Amy Bonner Langdo said that laying her nephew to rest last week was a very difficult day for her family, but that her niece was making progress. Bianca Bonner was taken from the residence not breathing, but was revived at the scene by emergency medical responders and has been in the hospital since.
“Bianca is doing great making huge progress,” Langdo said. “She is able to breath on her own. She will remain in the hospital for quite a few weeks. As my brother (Bianca’s father Robert Bonner) and I say, she is back to her sassy self.”
According to Langdo, the community support helped provide her nephew with a proper burial and the moneys donated will help with the medical bills.
“I know that people keep asking how they can help, a fund was sent up as Wells Fargo Bank in Flanders called the ‘The Cristiano Bonner Fund,’” Lango said. “I can't even begin to thank our community, so many people and organizations in Hopatcong have been beyond generous.”
Flanders First Reponders Reach Out
Flanders firefighters and emergency medical technicians have planned a daylong event from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. March 9 at their firehouse at 27 Main Street to help the survivors, who lost everything in a fatal fire on Feb. 18.
“These people are our neighbors,” said Doug Fenichel, president of the Flanders Fire Company #1 and Rescue Squad Association. “We want to help our neighbors, even after we’ve rolled up the fire hoses.”
The event will include a Zumbathon, a safety fair and clothing and gift card drive for the family.
The Zumbathon, hosted by Chester instructor Ana Norton, starts at 10 a.m. and runs until noon. Proceeds from the session will go directly to the family. Funds for the session go directly to the family. According to Fenichel, firefighters and EMTs will collect clothing and other items for family members who lost everything in the fire. The family has requested clothes and gift cards for clothing, toys and gasoline. No cash or food will be accepted. New clothing is needed in the following sizes:
- Carmella (mother) wears a medium in tops and a size 12 in bottoms
- Daughter wears a medium in junior tops, size 7 women’s shoes and enjoys animal prints
- Son wears a medium in young men’s clothing and a size 7½ men’s shoes.
- Bianca, the young girl pulled from the fire, wears size 7 girl’s
- shoes and wears sizes 18/20 in girls’ clothing.
Clothing, gift cards and other items can be delivered to the firehouse, at 27 Main Street in Flanders, Thursday March 7 through Saturday March 9.