The young mother who fell down the stairs of a New York City subway station while trying to carry her young daughter’s stroller may have died from a preexisting medical problem and not the fall, authorities revealed on Tuesday.
According to the New York Post, Malaysia Goodson, who had thyroid problems, had complained of headaches just the day before she and her 1-year-old daughter, Rhylee, were found at the bottom of the stairs coming from the street entrance at the 7th Ave/53rd St. station on Monday night.
Rhylee was unharmed in the fall.
Investigators don’t believe that Goodson fell far. She also had no marks on her body, leading authorities to believe that she had suffered from a medical episode, rather than tripping while attempting to carry the stroller with Rhylee down the stairs.
“I don’t know, maybe she was starting to feel faint,” her mother, Tamika Goodson, told The Post.
There are no witnesses to the actual fall.
Goodson, who lives in Stamford, Conn., was in the city visiting cousins and doing shopping with Rhylee when she fell. Her fall once again drew criticism to the city’s subway system, where many stations do not have elevators, and in the ones that do, the elevators are often out of order.
This lack of accessibility prompted a 2017 lawsuit against the transit authority, accusing the agency of violating the federal Americans with Disabilities Act. That case is still active.
The New York Times noted in an initial report that currently only about a quarter of New York City’s sprawling subway system’s 472 stations have elevators.
The New York Metropolitan Transit Authority, which called Goodson’s fall “heartbreaking”, announced that it had already approved a plan to install 50 new elevators in stations, although the station where Goodson died is not one of them.