THE BRONX - Students at P.S. 74 celebrated the opening of their new playground today but the ribbon-cutting was bittersweet.

The new playground is dedicated to a beloved school aide who died last spring of a heart attack. Evaristo ?Rico? Peralta was 43 at the time and left behind an entire school of children who say they will never forget him.

At the ceremony, students unveiled a plaque displaying Peralta?s name.

Many said he was a fixture at the school and in the community who left too soon.