STAMFORD, Conn. (AP) -- The uncle of three girls killed with their grandparents in a Christmas morning house fire in Connecticut says the family is devastated by the tragedy but comforted by each other and an outpouring of public sympathy.

Campbell Badger said Wednesday that his brother Matthew was a devoted father to his daughters. He says their family appreciates the prayers and support it has received.

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Matthew Badger hasn't commented publicly since 10-year-old Lily and 7-year-old twins Grace and Sarah died of smoke inhalation along with their mother's parents. Badger and the girls' mother are divorcing and he was not at the home when it was engulfed by flames.

The mother, Madonna Badger, and an acquaintance were the only survivors.

Authorities say embers in a bag of discarded fireplace ashes started the blaze.