The San Francisco Chronicle recently reported the death of Kenneth Goodwin, a 31-year-old disability rights advocate who fought to make San Francisco streets safer for the handicapped.
Goodwin was a 3-foot-tall man who got around the city in a wheelchair. He was fatally hit by a car at the intersection of Market Street and Octavia Boulevard. This intersection is one of San Francisco’s most dangerous for pedestrians and cyclists.
A memorial to Goodwin quickly sprang up at the crash site. Individuals close to him recalled his large personality and enthusiasm.
“After all he had been through, to get hit by a car, it’s crazy,” friend Nance Becker told the San Francisco Chronicle. “He was a noticeable guy because he didn’t look like anyone else. The fact is he could have had a very narrow life, but through his intelligence and personality, he had a fuller life.”
Goodwin was responsible for a change in how San Francisco emergency responders tended to the mobility devices of patients. In 2011, Good was injured when his wheelchair hit a bump on the sidewalk, causing him to fall. Goodwin was stuck at the hospital for five days because someone stole his wheelchair as he was being treated.
Market and Octavia is one of the most dangerous intersections in the city because of motorists making illegal right turns on the Highway 101 onramp, hitting pedestrians and cyclists. An automated traffic enforcement camera was installed at the intersection three days before Goodwin’s death.