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Josephine’s Dream: Mom forms scholarship in daughter’s memory

By Shannon Ballard Photojournalist: Rachel McPherron - 6:50 PM March 17, 2017

An Anchorage mother is working to make her daughter’s dream come true, but for someone else.

On June 19, 22-year-old Josephine Goodman was killed after falling from the top of a seven-story parking garage Downtown.

The medical examiner ruled Josephine’s death a suicide, but her mother isn’t so certain.

“I don’t believe it,” Josephine’s mother Ada Goodman said. “ I had to figure out the story for myself.”

Goodman says Josephine struggled with depression.

“She had demons in her head telling her she was never good enough,” Goodman said.

But just hours before Josephine’s fell to her death she sent her mother a text describing her day as “perfect.”



Goodman believes her daughter’s death wasn’t suicide, but rather the result of being over served by downtown bars. Josephine’s blood alcohol content was three times the legal driving limit when she fell to her death.

“I’m thinking she just went up there, she passed out, and she fell. That’s what I want everybody to think, to know, to believe. She had a blood alcohol level of .285 and how can you make a conscious decision at that point?” Goodman said.

Goodman says she shares her daughter’s story to remind people to think before they have another drink.

The last several months have been difficult for Goodman, but from all this sadness she hopes to create something positive.

Josephine’s passion was animals and she dreamed of going to school for animal care.

Her mother is now raising money to create scholarship for others with the same career ambition.

Goodman calls the scholarship fund “Josephine’s Dream”.

“She’d probably roll her eyes at me because she knows that I’m always a champion for the cause but I think she’d be proud,” Goodman said. “I think she’d be really happy. I just wish that she would have known how much she was loved.”

There is a “Josephine’s Dream” fundraiser happening Saturday, March 18 from 12 p.m. to 4 p.m. at Guido’s pizza in Anchorage. Goodman says all the money raised going into the scholarship fund.

You can also donate through the Alaska Community Foundation.

Correction: An earlier version of this story gave the incorrect date of Josephine’s death. It has been amended. 

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