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Catching a ride

National Guard aids in Minnesota mail delivery

Soldiers stand with postal worker near truck
Minnesota National Guard members and Warren, MN, Rural Carrier Harlan Boman gather near the site of the flooding last week. From left are Sgt. Timothy Benson, Spc. Brady Stevens, Boman, Pfc. Luther Newton and Sgt. Kyle Sommers.

The Minnesota National Guard is helping USPS get the mail in and out of Oslo, which is completely surrounded by water after the Red River breached its banks earlier this month.

The small town of about 300 people is in Northwest Minnesota, near the North Dakota border.

To get the mail through, Rural Carrier Harlan Boman meets guardsmen outside of nearby Alvarado, MN, where they load mail, parcels, medication and supplies onto a tactical vehicle.

“The National Guard has been very helpful and easy to work with,” said Boman. “We load the mail into the back of the truck … and I ride with it into Oslo.”

The carrier then walks his route and delivers to as many homes and business that are accessible. Then he meets up with the guardsmen to get back home.

“It’s a good feeling to help the community get the mail, since they’re living on an island,” said Sgt. Casey Rishovd.

Postmaster Maria Martin of the Warren, MN, Post Office, which serves Oslo, is very appreciative.

“The water may be high, but our spirit is never low when you see the care and concern of others,” said Martin. “Customers are very thankful for the extraordinary efforts of USPS and the National Guard.”

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