Dec. 15, 2010 — -- Mark Madoff's widow Stephanie has announced that there will be a private service for Mark Madoff, and asked that she and her family be allowed to grieve privately.
"My husband Mark took his own life," said Stephanie in a statement, "and regardless of what you feel about my father-in-law and his monstrous crimes, Mark's children are innocent victims and this is tragic for them. I am devastated and now raising two small children alone."
"I ask that you please show decency and understanding toward all of Mark's children and allow us to mourn in private."
In the statement, Stephanie said Mark Madoff had been cremated, and said there would be a private memorial service "later this week at an undisclosed location." She also said she appreciated the expressions of "heartfelt sympathy and support she had received" from people who knew and loved her husband.
"I will miss and love him forever," she said in closing.
Madoff's body was claimed by the funeral director of the Gramercy Park Memorial Chapel in Manhattan's East Village on Tuesday, three days after Madoff's suicide. Madoff, the 46-year-old son of convicted Ponzi schemer Bernie Madoff, was found dead in his apartment Saturday morning, two years to the day afterBernie's arrest.
Among the expressions of support for Mark Madoff was a memorial Facebook page titled "Rest in Peace Mark Madoff.". On it, high school friend David Nadler called Mark Madoff "one of the best people I ever knew."
In a separate post, Ed Langone wrote that the "very sad news" of Mark's death made him "think back to the days of the Heights School, East Hills, when everybody was just little kids, and the real world hadn't set in yet." Both are grade schools in Roslyn, New York, where Mark grew up. "A terrible tragedy all around, I feel sorry for his kids," wrote Langone.
Another poster, who identified herself as a former Madoff employee in London, wrote "SLEEP TIGHT MARK XXXXX."
Bernie Madoff Declined To Attend Funeral
"Mr. Madoff will not be attending the funeral out of consideration for his daughter-in-law and two grandchildren's privacy," said Madoff's lawyer, Ira Sorkin. "He will be conducting a private service on his own where he is now.
The confirmation that Madoff would be absent from his son's burial came after debate over whether the Bureau of Prisons would allow him a furlough to begin with.
Sorkin declined to comment on whether Madoff had asked to attend the funeral.
Madoff is currently serving a 150-year sentence at the Butner Federal Correctional Complex in North Carolina.
Herb Hoelter, a prison consultant who advised Madoff prior to his placement at Butner, told ABC News that it was unlikely prison officials would allow Madoff to attend if he wanted to: "They will probably not allow it in this case."
According to Hoelter, the security risk to Madoff combined with the Bureau of Prison's media-shy reputation would have made Madoff's case to attend the funeral an uphill battle.
"The B.O.P. will say that it would create too much of a furor," said Hoelter. "That it would create too much turmoil if he were allowed to go."
Ed Ross, the spokesman for the Bureau of Prisons, declined to comment on how Madoff learned of his son's death. He said the department also does not comment on inmate's requests for furloughs.