Public service was in Mildred DeMarco's blood, whether helping numerous nonprofit organizations or serving as Farmingdale's first female village board member in 1984.
DeMarco, 100, who died June 28 at a hospice near her home in Calabash, N.C., "was an amazing person," said her niece, Pat McMahon of Babylon. "She volunteered for so many things. She was an inspiration."
Born in Manhattan, DeMarco was a 1934 graduate of New York University with a degree in foreign languages.
In 1937, she moved to Farmingdale, where she worked at Seversky Aircraft Co. at Republic Airport translating foreign letters. Later she managed the office of her husband, architect Joseph DeMarco, who died in 1977 after 40 years of marriage. She also was a substitute teacher.
Meanwhile, she plunged into local causes and remained active for five decades. She volunteered for the March of Dimes for 47 years and served as treasurer for its Long Island Chapter. She was also active in the American Cancer Society, including serving as chairwoman of the Farmingdale unit for 15 years, Farmingdale Lions Club, American Association of University Women, St. Kilian Church and Kiwanis. She was a board member of Hardscrabble Senior Citizens Complex and volunteered at the Daleview Nursing Home in the village. She was also a Democratic committeewoman and the village party co-leader.
"She volunteered at Daleview when she was in her 70s," McMahon said. "I asked her what she did and she said 'I help the older people.' "
Through the years, she racked up many firsts including first chairwoman of the board of fire commissioners. DeMarco served on the Farmingdale village planning and zoning boards for a total of 32 years.
Appointed to fill a seat of the village board of trustees in 1984, she served for 10 years. She ran unsuccessfully for mayor in 1994.
In 1996, DeMarco moved to North Carolina. There, she volunteered for the March of Dimes, American Cancer Society, Literacy Council of Brunswick County, Lions Club, Lower Cape Fear Hospice, Ladies Guild of Our Lady Star of the Sea Catholic Church, North Myrtle Beach Middle School, Autumn Care Nursing Center and Shallotte Assisted Living. She was past president of the zoning and planning boards in Calabash.
She is survived by three sons, Dr. Thomas J. DeMarco of Cleveland, Gerald F. DeMarco of Miami, and Ray L. DeMarco of Portsmouth, N.H.; two sisters, Theresa McMahon of Calabash, N.C., and Dorothy Hoffmann of Ocean Isle Beach, N.C.; seven grandchildren; and three great-grandchildren.
A viewing will be Thursday from 6 to 8 p.m. at Arthur White Funeral Home in Farmingdale. A funeral Mass will be said at St. Kilian's Church at 10:45 a.m. Friday, with burial at St. Charles Cemetery in Pinelawn.