Madonna | Michigan | Music

Madonna's Brother Is A Homeless Man

500px-Madonna_en_ChelseaMadonna's older brother is living under a bridge in Traverse City, MI.

"My family turned their back on me, basically, when I was having a hard time," the 55-year-old Anthony Ciccone told The Michigan Messenger. "You think I haven’t answered this kind of question a bazillion times -- why my sister is a multibazillionarie, and I’m homeless on the street?"

Ciccone doesn't mention the nature of his "hard time," nor does he explain why he lost his job at his dad's winery last year. He does say that he suffered from frostbite during his first winter on the streets, and recounts how another homeless man, a friend, lost ten toes to the cold.

"Never say never," says Ciccone. "This could happen to anybody."

It's 47 degrees Fahrenheit in Traverse City this evening, and falling.

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  1. just because his sister is rich doesn't mean she should sort out his life financially. he needs to help himself first, before expecting favours.

    Posted by: Franco | Oct 22, 2011 9:19:30 PM

  2. Let's try this again. I agree with Franco. It's no Madonna's responsibility. And I doubt she wants to. So, don't expect any kind of intervention. I'm really sad you disallow my belligerent posts. I think they're pretty funny.

    Posted by: ZOMG NATALIE TRAN | Oct 22, 2011 9:23:10 PM

  3. Sad, and shameful since getting him a house would be literally as easy for her as snapping her fingers.

    Posted by: Dan | Oct 22, 2011 9:31:55 PM

  4. You two make odd poster boys for conservative family values: unless heartlessness and sibling selfishness are promoted in your homes as virtues.

    She's richer than Croesus. She can afford to find him an apartment in the midwest. She really should. He's her brother.

    Posted by: yonquersconquers | Oct 22, 2011 9:33:12 PM

  5. Damn you can buy a house in Detroit for the price of a Gucci bag. Lourdes probably has enough in her purse to set him up.

    Posted by: Jeff | Oct 22, 2011 9:39:20 PM

  6. We don't know the full story of what his problems are. She may have helped him in the past, and he certainly doesn't need to sleep under a bridge. There are shelters where people can go. Maybe he would just drink, drug or gamble any financial help away. We just don't know, but if it were her other brother - I would say let him freeze.

    Posted by: ynot | Oct 22, 2011 9:46:20 PM

  7. it's so easy to judge when u don't know the whole story. my first reaction to this was " it's unbelievable that madonna's brother is homeless. she is so heartless. " but then i rememberes her brother from truth or dare. he is an alcoholic. trust me, and i'm speaking as a recovering alcoholic addict. no matter what u do for someone, they r not going to get better until they themselves want to get better. it's an awful disease that destroys everything that is good around u. my family loves me to death, but by the end of my last relapse they were just so tired, betrayed and hurt for every thing that i had done to them that i can understand a father firing his own son. the things that i've and so many addicts have put r family true are horrific. my family gave me a home, food, money and cars and that in some ways only helped me to feed my addiction further. please don't judge madonna, not bcause of some silly thing like " she's the queen of pop " but bcause she and her family, specially her father, r human being that have dealt with and r dealing with one of the most pernicious and poisonous illnesses that has ever existed.

    Posted by: juan | Oct 22, 2011 9:47:00 PM

  8. Regardless of what they might have to say, "ZOMG Natalie Tran" is a known troll that should be permanently banned from commenting on any story here. They regularly post anti-gay comments that are intended to incite anger. I don't like censorship but that kind of hate speech just for shits and giggles is puerile and makes me wonder if this person is just a pimply-faced self-loathing teenager living in their parent's basement with nothing better to do in life than visit a gay blog and try to irritate people, just because they're obviously so miserable themselves.

    Posted by: atomic | Oct 22, 2011 9:53:48 PM

  9. It is not so difficult to pass judgment having none of the pertinent facts, and only the brother's very broad accusation. No real interview, with probing questions was conducted.

    If it was only last year that Anthony Ciccone had a job in his family's winery, which means he has, besides Madonna, other family members, then it seems likely that there is much more to this story.

    But generally speaking I have lived long enough to observe a tendency toward stinginess and cold disregard of others in those who have attained great wealth.

    And the whole world has seen that this very talented woman can be quite pretentious and shallow, one moment playing house and cultivating a silly British accent, the next divorced and humping on Jesus, seemingly incapable of sustaining a relationship. She is like a little girl in an aging woman's body who still cannot sort herself out, who she is, which is why she is always reinventing herself.

    Yeah, I would say that there is a lot more to this story.

    Posted by: Ricco | Oct 22, 2011 9:56:47 PM

  10. she can send him a red wrist ribbon and a bottle of magic kabalah water

    "snark" (for the snark impaired)

    she should at least set up a small account that he can only touch the interest and never the principal then she can wish him well and he can do whatever

    After of course paying to have him checked over by doctors

    Posted by: say what | Oct 22, 2011 9:57:06 PM

  11. I am not a troll. I do not make anti-gay comment nor do I support their sentiment. I am however callous and uncaring, usually. I have compassion. I have understanding. I just didn't realize that THOSE kinds of comments are the ONLY ones supported by this site. It gets kind of boring after a while to see the same sentiment over and over, rehashed again and again. Why can we not debate on something without having to preface it with "I feel terrible but?" Why can't we just be honest?

    Posted by: ZOMG NATALIE TRAN | Oct 22, 2011 9:59:45 PM

  12. Know who Joe Henry is? Recording "Don't Tell Me" provided FAR more than most any other sister can offer another. (do the research) I can't be the only 1 here who has a relative that has LOST the plot... This is Non-News, why be so quick to condemn someone who has never been anything but supportive to the gay community????

    Posted by: starquisha | Oct 22, 2011 10:06:32 PM

  13. Houses in Detroit are like 5,000. It's a shame.

    Posted by: Li Li Monfrief | Oct 22, 2011 10:25:48 PM

  14. I'm filing this under: Not My Business.

    Posted by: Cody Brett | Oct 22, 2011 10:31:09 PM

  15. She's helped him and some of her other siblings, but obviously there is an issue—his own FATHER fired him. I think people just like to believe if someone in a family (regardless of any familial closeness prior) is stinking rich, they divide it up and share. Not how it works.

    But it was nice to use a lovely CONFESSIONS-era shot.

    Posted by: Matthew Rettenmund | Oct 22, 2011 10:33:24 PM

  16. I hope she fixes this. Even if he is the one who wrote books, if you're crazy and Madonna's your sister you will write a book... He probably can't make any financial decisions but she could set something modest up for him.

    Posted by: MKe | Oct 22, 2011 10:51:44 PM

  17. Since we don't know all of the details on this story, I think I'm gonna side with Madonna on this one. A more plausible story would be that her brother sold the house that Madonna bought him so he could buy drugs and booze. He drank bottles of wine out of his dads winery, showed up late for work every single day, and now he feels entitled to more money from his sister. If Madonna bailed him out, AGAIN, history would repeat itself...... AGAIN.

    Posted by: Jake Netherton | Oct 22, 2011 11:15:23 PM

  18. Set him up in a one bedroom and give him a booze allowance and let him drink himself to death in peace if that what he wants to do. $2000.00 a month should cover it.

    Posted by: Lazycrockett | Oct 22, 2011 11:29:39 PM

  19. He's not the one who wrote the book about here. Their brother Christopher Ciccone is the one who wrote the book.

    Sometimes families get tired of giving someone $2000/month. Sometimes the $2000/month is only used to make things worse.

    Sometimes you have to walk away.

    Posted by: JeffNYC | Oct 22, 2011 11:57:32 PM

  20. To YNOT and others - You are not remembering "Truth or Dare" correctly. Anthony is not Madonna's brother who was just let out of rehab in the movie and then showed up drunk after her show. That was Marty, another older brother who had hoped to ride Madonna's coattails to an acting career, but failed. This one, Anthony, has not been in the limelight to my knowledge. It's a sad story, but it's not her responsibility to take care of him. He's an adult. In fact he's middle-aged. How he could screw up a job working for his father suggests his problems are probably pretty bad.

    Posted by: JCMS | Oct 22, 2011 11:58:32 PM

  21. I may not be a billionaire, but have helped my sister, who suffers from a mental issue, too many times to count. She is currently in a psychiatric hospital in Asheville. I have done everything I can money-wise for the last 12 years and absolutely no progress on her part as far as recovery. This includes stints in Vermont and Harvard in Boston. I have to be on Madonna's side on is not the issue. I'm at my wit's end!!

    Posted by: Matt F | Oct 23, 2011 12:00:20 AM

  22. just because she is rich does not mean she should be "wasting" money on someone who may not deserve the help, the money should be spent on people like the students in her school in Africa who are properly using the opportunity.

    Now, i don't know what is going on between her and her family nor do i care, maybe she is a wicked sister, or maybe she has helped him so much, but some how he STILL ends up in the street, again don't know and don't care.

    Lets turn it the other way, how can your sister be Madonna, and you ended up in the street? what did you do with that opportunity?

    Posted by: johnosahon | Oct 23, 2011 1:24:24 AM

  23. I won't recount all the experience I have with the disease of alcoholism and drug abuse, but it's extensive. After a while you have to cut the cord. Madonna was almost certainly aware that this would be publicized, but I respect her decision to give up and let her loved one be in the media, and hopefully get better on his own.

    Even without the media, it's hard as hell, especially when people expect you to support their disease because you have money and they don't. I've done it, and it was pointless.

    Posted by: Paul R | Oct 23, 2011 1:28:08 AM

  24. That's Kabbalah for you-the religion (LOL) for the "ME ME ME" Generation.

    Posted by: Molc | Oct 23, 2011 1:45:51 AM

  25. So many families seem to need an "other" to distract them from the overall dysfunction in their relationships. I should know, I'm the pariah in mine.

    Anyway,I never was much of a fan. Even in Madonna's heyday I never bought her records.

    Posted by: Tone | Oct 23, 2011 7:51:23 AM

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