MOUNT KISCO, N.Y. -- Maria DePoto touched a lot of lives in Mount Kisco, and now the community is returning the favor.
A GoFundMe page has been launched in honor of DePoto, who died Sunday at 68. As of Tuesday, more than $3,000 has been raised and the money will go to her daughter Nicole to help pay for funeral expenses.
DePoto worked for 15 years as a preschool teacher at the Boys and Girls Club. That's where Ashley Balogh, who started the GoFundMe page, first met "Mrs. D."
"From when we were three years old, I had a very special relationship with Nicole and her mother, Maria," Balogh said. "We're now going on nearly 24 years of friendship. We have been through so much together over the years, both the good and the bad."
Balogh said Maria was like a second mother to her and her friends.
"She would drop everything to help anybody, up until her last days," Balogh said. "She always had great words of advice. I will never forget her words of wisdom. She was hilarious and always told it like it was."
Balogh said she was so appreciative to see the community come together to help Nicole.
"Everyone rallies together in a time of need," Balogh said. "It's truly amazing. Nicole is an amazing friend and this is the least I can do to try and give back to her."
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