Mardi Gras, Indian culture historian Wendy Good, dies at 61 after a bout with brain cancer/ Eyewitness News

With her passing comes the loss of a woman known for keeping the spirit of New Orleans alive with her countless stories and photos of Carnival Indians. 

Author: Paul Dudley / Eyewitness News

Published: 6:58 PM CDT May 27, 2020

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NEW ORLEANS — A New Orleans lawyer and photographer known for capturing Mardi Gras Indian culture through her many photos and stories died Sunday following a long battle with brain cancer, according to her daughter. 

Just over a month ago in the midst of the pandemic, dozens showed up to say hello from afar to Wendy Good as her friends hosted a drive-by parade for her in her neighborhood. 

“I was surprised, but not really. My mom gave so much of herself to everyone. She has had friends from all stages of her life, all walks of life,” said Wendy Good’s daughter, Emily Good.

The outpouring of support came a little over a month before her death from glioblastoma brain cancer on Sunday. With her passing comes the loss of a woman known for keeping the spirit of New Orleans alive with her countless stories and photos of Carnival Indians.

“She kept taking photos of them, and she had all of these photos of David Montana of the Washitaw Nation,” said Emily Good. “We were like ‘Mom who is this?’ She knew all about him but didn’t know him.”

That would all change. The two would become close friends for the rest of Good’s life. Montana called her an official member of the Washitaw Nation and would even bring the Indians to her when she couldn’t go to them last Mardi Gras. They sang Good a song reserved for the big chef. 

“They just created an instant bond, and that’s who my mom was,” Emily Good. 

A lover of music, Good became a regular at Bullet’s Sports Bar. She shot a photo of Kermit Ruffins there. He used it for an album cover. 

“I think we were walking at Jazz Fest around the corner to the fairgrounds, and someone she knew came up to her with a copy of the cover and they were like ‘Will you sign this for me?’” said Emily Good. “I was like that’s like interesting…it turns out she had shot the album cover and she didn’t even tell us.”

This New Orleanian was certainly taken too soon — at just 61, but she did good during her life.

“She was a mom that wanted to be there for every homeroom, every tennis match. I am so lucky to have had a mom that passed down many traits and values and she really — along with my dad — made me into who I am today,” said Emily Good. 

The family held a private burial. A public memorial service will be held at a later date.  Bullet — at Bullets Sports Bar — called Wendy Good a fixture of the bar. He plans to put a picture of her at her table — table four. 

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