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Judy Benjamin Goodyear, 85, trail-blazing Buffalo area real estate broker | Featured Obituaries


From the late 1960s to the mid 1970s, when her children were ice skaters, she was artistic director for numerous ice shows at the Buffalo Curling Club and the Buffalo Skating Club, coordinating costumes, sets and music and bringing in skaters from out of town to perform.

“She was superactive as a mom,” her daughter Karen said. “Anything she got involved with, she immersed herself 100%. She would motivate people.”

First married to Alan Benjamin, she met attorney Laurence R. Goodyear, a founding partner of Hodgson, Russ, Andrews, Woods and Goodyear, the oldest and largest law firm in Buffalo, when she helped him in the sale of his home. They reconnected several years later and were married in 1980. He died in 1995.

Her husband founded the Forest Lawn Heritage Foundation and, after she became a Foundation director, she had a major role in starting the cemetery’s Trolley Tour and introducing creative memorial works and various other projects.

“Judy pushed the limits in furthering the vision of Forest Lawn as an outdoor sculpture gallery,” cemetery director Joseph Dispenza said. “Perhaps the best example is her own memorial, on which a bronze imprint of her hand and those of her three children appear on all four sides. So, even today, I can put my hand in hers.”


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