Eagle death

An Eagle man’s death, initially deemed to be of natural causes, is now being investigated as a homicide.

On May 6, Alaska State Troopers were notified that 69-year old Eagle resident Gerald Goodnoh had been found deceased at his property several miles outside of the village. The body was discovered by a concerned community member who went to check on Goodnoh after not seeing him for several days, trooper public information officer Austin McDaniel said.

Next of kin and health aides responded to the scene, and Goodnoh’s body was taken to the Eagle clinic. The troopers were notified, which McDaniel said is common when a death occurs outside of a medical facility.

An Eagle village health aid told troopers that Goodnoh’s death was due to natural causes, according to a trooper dispatch. Despite no foul play being suspected, the State Medical Examiner’s office was contacted and requested to examine the body. McDaniel explained that every death reported to the troopers is subsequently reported to the State Medical Examiner’s office, which then determines whether to conduct an autopsy or to release the body at that time.

The State Medical Examiner’s office determined that Goodnoh’s death was a homicide and alerted troopers on May 11. The cause of death is not being released at this time in order to not interfere with the ongoing investigation by the Fairbanks General Investigative Unit, McDaniel said.

However, he added, “investigators were able to uncover physical evidence which is consistent with the determination made by the state medical examiner.”

This is the second suspicious discovery in the region this spring. On April 26, human remains were found in a freezer near mile 112 of the Tok Cutoff. Troopers have released no information regarding the investigation since the initial discovery.

Contact reporter Maisie Thomas at 459-7544.