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Eyewitness to history

Alabama employee was part of civil rights turning point

DPMG Ron Stroman and Selma, AL, Distribution Clerk George James.
DPMG Ron Stroman and Selma, AL, Distribution Clerk George James.

Selma, AL, Distribution Clerk George James was one of the peaceful protestors marching across the Edmund Pettus Bridge on March 7, 1965, when police attacked. Fifty years later, he’s thankful he survived.

“You have to keep the faith,” James said.

The 27-year Postal Service employee was recently recognized by DPMG Ron Stroman, who visited Alabama last weekend to commemorate “Bloody Sunday,” which became a turning point in the civil rights movement.

“This is very personal for me because if it were not for people like Mr. James, I would not be where I am today,” Stroman said. “Mr. James was willing to go that extra mile, and it’s wonderful that he’s here to tell his story.”

During a meeting with Alabama District employees, Stroman presented James with framed artwork of a 2005 Selma commemorative stamp and a special envelope to mark the march’s 50th anniversary.

The DPMG also discussed the Postal Service’s historic role in providing African-Americans with middle-class jobs at fair pay.

James, who has never used a day of sick leave during his career, said he’s proud to work for USPS.

“It’s an equal opportunity employer that values the contributions of all people,” James said.

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