Women’s History Month: Nancy Kearse Gooding
As Women’s History Month comes to a close, News 12 brings you the story of one Brooklyn woman who helped shape the neighborhood of Red Hook.
Nancy Kearse Gooding passed away nearly four decades ago, but her impact on the Red Hook community can still be felt today. She was born in 1936 and made Brooklyn her home, raising seven children while dedicating herself to the community.
Gooding ran an organization that helped local Brooklyn residents find jobs and was also elected as district leader with the endorsement of the late Shirley Chisholm. Gooding was a frontline fighter, demanding her neighborhood have a health center moved so it would be more accessible for low-income residents.
Gooding’s family says she was also involved in the planning of townhouses along Visitation Place, Coffey Streetand Verona Street – where some of her family lives to this day.
“She was about community, she was about service, she was about change,” said her daughter. “She did anything to help anyone, and she demanded respect.”
When Gooding was 47 years old, she died of heart complications following a surgery. Her loss was felt through the community, and now part of her legacy is at risk of fading, with a new plan to tear down the aging townhouses and replace them with modern affordable housing units.
Gooding’s daughter and granddaughter hope to rename a part of Visitation Place in her honor. Community Board 6 is planning to vote on the street renaming at a meeting on April 19.