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Daughter of victim in Kalamazoo apartment fire asks community for help

Posted at 10:23 PM, Jan 08, 2017

PORTAGE, Mich. -- A woman in Kalamazoo County woke up to news that her mother was killed following a fire at the Crosstown Parkway Apartments early Saturday morning. Investigators say Barbara Posey, 74, was found on the seventh floor balcony and rushed to the hospital but didn't survive. Now her family is trying to give her the funeral she wanted.

Posey's daughter, Jacqueline Slumkoski, says her mother was her best friend and would do anything for anyone. On Saturday, Slumkoski got a call saying her mother didn't make it, so she's asking for the community's help to give her mother the funeral she deserves.

Posey wished to be buried next to her two youngest children, who died in the early 90s. Her family has set up a GoFundMe page, hoping to give her a proper burial.

Officials believe the fire at Crosstown Parkway Apartments started in Posey's apartment, but the cause is still under investigation.

Posey, who suffered from multiple health conditions, had a difficult time even getting out onto the balcony, but doctors say it was a heart attack that ultimately took her life.

"She made it to her balcony and they got her down, but her heart had stopped," said Jacqueline Slumkoski, Posey's daughter.

"My mom is a strong woman, she's always been a very strong woman," said Slumkoski. "She raised four kids by herself."

Slumkoski says her mother had talked to her about funeral plans in the past. Her only wish was to be buried, not cremated.

"One thing she told me is not to cremate her, and I don't want to go against her wishes," said Slumkoski.

"She would do anything for anybody," said Slumkoski. "Everybody loved her. She was a wonderful woman and my best friend. My mom deserves a good funeral; she's had such a hard life."

The fire at Crosstown Parkway Apartments forced several people out of their homes. Those displaced by the fire are betting help from the YMCA and Red Cross.