An unforgettable 20th birthday

Customer Services Supervisor Leon Hernandez shows Andra, Sarah, and Sarah’s sister-in-law how the mail is sorted each day.

Customer Services Supervisor Leon Hernandez shows Andra, Sarah, and Sarah’s sister-in-law how the mail is sorted each day.

The birthday surprise began at the De Soto, KS, Post Office where Postmaster Luke Grant joined with employees to sort through hundreds of letters all addressed to one girl, Sarah Fugate, who recently turned 20.

Sarah was diagnosed with autism as a child, and although doctors said she wouldn’t live a long life, she defying the odds. Opening letters from the mail, in addition to collecting baby dolls, are among Sarah’s favorite hobbies. Sarah’s mother, Andra, wanted to give her daughter a special birthday treat, so she set up a Facebook page and asked if anyone would be interested in sending a card to Sarah for her birthday. More than 300 individuals from around the world responded by sending cards, letters and packages.

Sarah’s story also reached the desk of Kansas Governor Sam Brownback, Senators Pat Roberts and Jerry Moran, who all mailed her a special birthday letter.

“Dear Sarah, congrats on celebrating your 20th birthday,” Senator Moran’s letter read.

Knowing how much the mail meant to Sarah, Luke arranged a postal party and invited the entire Fugate family to the Desoto Post Office the following week. The party consisted of a personal tour of the Post Office and a postal vehicle, a gift of a new baby doll, a birthday card signed by De Soto employees, and lunch which included her favorite red velvet cake.

Andra was overwhelmed by the outpouring of birthday wishes for her daughter.

“This is the most special birthday ever,” said Andra. “Except for the first one because they told us we would never have a first one. So for it to be 20 is pretty awesome.”

Acting Manager Post Office Operations Tom Flynn shared his appreciation for the De Soto team in making Sarah’s 20th birthday a special one to remember.

“I would like to give special thanks to Postmaster Luke Grant and the entire De Soto Post Office staff for honoring a young girl’s wish and making her birthday an unforgettable one,” said Tom.

Birthday Surprise

Birthday surprise

USPS employees often form a bond with customers that transcend business transactions. For one particular customer in Albuquerque, NM, that experience was enhanced with cake and coffee.

Minnie is a regular customer of the Business Mail Entry Unit. She routinely sends a monthly newsletter through the unit and enjoys the opportunity to speak with the staff.

“This wonderful group of ladies and gentlemen are the best and most efficient people that anyone would be proud to work with,” said Minnie in a recent email.

In a recent discussion about her age with the staff, Minnie told them she recently celebrated her 91st birthday. When she returned the following month to send her monthly newsletter, the employees had prepared a birthday celebration for her and sang happy birthday when she entered the facility, provided her with cake and coffee, and presented her with a Jazz Forever poster signed by the entire staff.

“I feel very special, and that memory will forever be in my heart,” said Minnie.

Happy President’s Day!

Presidents Day 02162015

What’s in a Box?

Priority Mail

Many different types of mail find their way into blue mailbox sentries around the country each day. The sizes, shapes, and content of these items are often as unique as those who send them, and the intriguing mystery of what could be inside the mail is as captivating as the latest detective novel.

It was a warm, sunny Monday morning. The air was dry with the barest hint of a gentle breeze. I had just picked up the latest edition of the daily news from Johnny at the corner market when I spotted her.

She wore a long, flowing dress with a colorful floral print. Her wide-brimmed, yellow hat shielded her eyes from the glare of the piercing sun, creating a mysterious shadow across her face. I didn’t recognize her right away and was about to turn into Joe’s Diner to pick up my mid-morning coffee when I spotted it.

There, in her right hand, was the item. It looked like any of 1,000 other items just like it, except it was different. I almost didn’t notice it, but I’ve been in this business too long to miss much. Call it a curse or the luck of years of experience, but there it is.

The woman casually glanced around the area when she approached the mailbox, making sure she wasn’t being watched. I performed my best impersonation of an uninterested bystander by leaning against a brick wall, nonchalantly flipping the pages of my paper. It must have worked because when I peered over the top edge of page 7, I saw her grip the handle of the mailbox, pull down the chute, and drop the item inside. She was as cool as they come, or at least as far as I’ve seen in my time.

A car approached and pulled up next to her as if on cue. She approached the tan, four door sedan and looked around one more time. I’m not sure if it was the piercingly bright sun reflecting off the roof of the car or the distraction of her warm, brown eyes, but when she looked in my direction, I froze. We locked eyes for a brief second, far too long for someone in my line of work, before she winked and entered the car.

I shook my head as the car drove away. I knew better than to let the subject spot my interest, but I never could resist the mesmerizing eyes of my wife. I guess that’s why I married her all those years ago. Well, at least that’s part of the reason.

My only question now is to figure out what she sent for my birthday before it arrives at the office. It’s part of our annual game we play to see if I can still use my waning detective skills to figure out what the gift is before it shows up, and I haven’t lost yet.

My name is Frank, and I’m a private detective. I’m usually pretty good at this game, but this year I’m stumped. It could be a momentary lapse in my working memory or the expired salmon dish I ate last night. Either way, I could sure use your help.

Every birthday for the past 15 years, my wife has bought me the latest gadget or electronic accessory that has the potential to help someone like me in this line of work. Now, I’ll be the first to admit that I don’t quite get all the fancy apps and slick new devices out there, but I can usually expand my horizons and find a use for them. Eventually.

She sent the item in a Priority Mail envelope using a pre-printed label, and it takes two days to arrive at my office. I have that much time to figure out what it is or I owe her dinner at our favorite restaurant. I usually end up taking her there anyway, but still, I enjoy the challenge.

Given your keen sense of observation and knowledge of new gadgets and electronic accessories out there, what do you think she bought for my birthday this year?

Happy Presidents’ Day!

Happy birthday george

Happy Birthday, Martin Luther King Jr.

Martin Luther King Jr

  • Hello, I'm Benny the Blogger: I'm the world's most famous postal employee. My hobbies are snappy quotes, kite flying and publishing. I was born Jan. 17, 1706, but don't call me old.

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