She kept her business running after becoming widowed with 8 kids. Now she’s getting a historic marker.

PORTLAND, Maine — When Toy Len Goon’s husband Dogan Goon died at the Togus Veterans Hospital in 1941, she was left to run their Woodfords Corner hand-operated laundry service on her own.

Goon also found herself the single mother of eight children between the ages of 3 and 16.

At that point, others may have given up or crumpled under the pressure. Goon did not. Instead she kept all her children in school, saw each one graduate and then go on to higher learning. Goon was even named the nation’s “Mother of the Year,” and met first lady Bess Truman in 1952.

Toy Len Goon works in her laundry on Portland’s Forest Avenue in an undated photograph. Her daughter, Doris, works in the background. Credit: Collections of Maine Historical Society, courtesy of

To honor Goon’s achievements and perpetuate her memory, the Chinese and American Friendship Association of Maine is unveiling a historic marker on Sunday at…

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