Family hosts picnic fundraiser for young girl allegedly killed by her father

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OCEANSIDE, Calif. --  The family of a 7-year-old Oceanside girl allegedly killed by her father held a fundraiser Saturday to collect donations to help pay for the child’s funeral.

At Buddy Todd Park in Oceanside, a family gathered to enjoy good food, music and company.

“There’s food and drinks, different kinds of Mexican plates and stuff like that,” said the victim’s cousin, Carolina Fuentes.  “And we have music to get the kids all entertained.”

But it wasn't just a fun day at the park. The family had gathered to raise money to bury 7-year-old Mariah Araujo. “We’re collecting money because we need $15 thousand to put into her funeral -- for her headstone and for the casket and everything that needs to be done,” Fuentes said.

Mariah was found stabbed to death on July 31 in a bathtub in her home. Her father, Pedro Araujo, is accused in the killing.

His family is still in shock about what happened and is trying to cope with the loss. “It’s tragic. We basically lost two people because we’re never going to see him again. He’s going to be in jail for a long time. But it’s even harder to lose her and never get to see her again,” Fuentes said.

The family hopes that by coordinating the fundraiser the community will step up and help lay Mariah to rest.

“It’s been a lot of people that came, a lot of the community helped and donated food and drinks. So we’ve made a good profit and we’re really close to the amount that we need to bury her,” Fuentes said. “We want to give her the proper burial that she deserves.”

The family also set up a GoFundMe page that had raised nearly $3,000 by Saturday evening.

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