Mankato, MN – By Lee Bonorden, Austin Daily Herald – Trish Marin is beside herself with grief.Her best friend is dead and it hurts.

After Saturday’s benefit, the pain is still as acute as ever.

Amy Diaz was that kind of woman.

“We were close friends,” Marin said. “Very close. We grew up together in Austin after our families moved hear from Yankton, South Dakota. She was the best friend I ever had.”

Diaz, 33, died of carbon monoxide poisoning three weeks ago in her new home in a Mankato subdivision. It was the first home the woman ever owned.

According to the Mankato Free Press daily newspaper, Diaz was using a gasoline-powered generator to supply electricity to the house, which was not properly ventilated.

David Henderson, brother-in-law of the deceased, and Diaz’s 14-year-old son, Ryan, discovered the body.

The teenage son and his 12-year-old sister, Ashley, are living with their father, Leon Diaz in Mankato. Leon and Amy Diaz were divorced three years ago.

The deceased worked at Hickory Tech in Mankato and part-time at Mickey’s Sports Bar and Grill, also in Mankato.

Funeral services were held at SS. Peter and Paul Catholic Church in Mankato.

A trust fund was established to help take care of the children’s needs.

Carbon monoacid deaths amount to nearly 500 each year in the United States, according to the Centers for Disease Control, Atlanta, GA.

A simple CO detector, costing between $20 to $50, is considered a simple, inexpensive way to avoid the tragedy.