LANSINGBURGH, N.Y. – Three family members died within 24 hours of each other Thursday.
The Troy Fire Department responded to a call for a person trapped inside a home while it was on fire late Thursday night, but firefighters discovered the body of a woman who had passed away inside.
Family members have identified the 19-year-old as Vanessa Milligan. She was pregnant at the time.
Family and friends gathered Friday to pray and embrace each other and remember Milligan for the joy she brought to all those who knew her.
“Vanessa is one of a kind,” her aunt Michelle Poulen said. “She’s very bright and anybody that came across her would know that.”
Poulen fought back tears while she honored her niece.
“[This t-shirt] is representing my niece and her unborn child that we lost in the fire last night,” she said.
Milligan’s pregnancy was full-term. Poulen said she was six days away from her due date.
Family members said Milligan lived on Fifth Avenue in Lansingburgh with her grandmother who had lost her battle with cancer just hours earlier on Thursday.
Patricia Sunkes is also Milligan’s grandmother.
“Her smily, how every time you see her she was happy go lucky, and now it comes to this,” she said. “There’s not really enough words to say about Vanessa. For how great a granddaughter she was and how much she will be missed.”
Friends and family lit candles and embraced one another while holding a vigil. Her aunt Carrie Vuignier said she was well loved.
“She was a very bright young lady, and she will be missed,” she said.