Officer James M. Goodman (11144), San Bernardino Area, passed away June 3, 2004, at approximately 1258 hours, at Loma Linda University Medical Center. Officer Goodman was responding on his motorcycle to the Redlands Department of Motor Vehicles building to investigate a hit and run traffic collision. Upon his arrival, he gave chase behind the suspected hit and run driver when another vehicle pulled out and hit him.
Officer Goodman received the prestigious Governor's Medal of Valor Award in 1991 for his heroic efforts during the 1989 Loma Prieta Earthquake. During this incident, he disregarded his personal safety in order to rescue victims trapped on Interstate 880, also known as the Cypress Freeway overpass. Goodman crawled between a two-foot opening of the collapsed freeway decks in order to gain access to a victim who was trapped inside a truck that had been crushed to a height of approx. two feet. He tore out the stuffing from the driver's seat and cut the seat springs in attempts to free the victim. Others joined him and worked for approximately three hours in this courageous effort. Firefighters eventually replaced them and removed the victim using "Jaws of Life" of equipment. Officer Goodman was 48 at the time of his death and had been a member of the department for 20 years.