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Blue streak

USPS retiree honors former colleagues

Margaret Daniels, a retired Postal Service employee, stands near the mailboxes she affixed with blue ribbons in her Gardnerville, NV, neighborhood.

When Margaret Daniels read on social media that people were being asked to tie blue ribbons to their mailboxes to show support for Postal Service employees, she took the challenge to heart.

The Gardnerville, NV, retiree affixed more than 70 blue ribbons and bows to mailboxes in her neighborhood — far more than anyone else who is known to have participated in the challenge.

“Postal workers are the ones binding the country together right now,” she said.

Daniels understands better than most the importance of USPS: In 2012, she concluded a 37-year postal career, including a long run as Postmaster in Markleeville, CA.

“I absolutely loved my job,” Daniels said, adding that working for USPS was “more of a privilege than a job.”

The blue ribbon challenge was started by Lewisburg, WV, Postmaster Sean Acord, who took to Facebook in March to encourage people to attach blue ribbons and thank-you cards to their mailboxes to show their support for postal workers during the coronavirus pandemic.

The goal, Acord said, is to provide letter carriers, rural carriers and others with “a little bit of an uplift” when they collect and deliver mail each day.

People in about 25 states have participated, Acord said, adding that some customers have had to get creative about acquiring blue ribbons in a time when many craft stores and other retailers are closed.

In Arkansas, one customer ordered a blue ribbon from a local florist. When it arrived, it read, “Congratulations. It’s a boy!”

Daniels said she also experienced limited resources when she made her ribbons, adding that the bows she made “are not as big as I would like.”

Nevertheless, she’s glad she got to show her former postal colleagues how much they mean to her.

“The expression ‘thank you’ goes a long way and people need to use it more often than they do,” she said.