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A customer mailed handwritten letters to all 580 of her Facebook friends

Amy Weinland Daughters said her ‘social experiment’ showed the importance of USPS

A woman places a letter in a blue U.S. Mail box
Amy Weinland Daughters mails a letter.

Amy Weinland Daughters was scrolling through Facebook in 2014 when she decided to look up a friend from her youth, Dana Dugas Rivera.

“I started doing a deeper dive,” Daughters said.

She discovered that Rivera’s young son, Parker, was battling cancer. The two women caught up through Facebook messages, then Daughters began mailing letters and cards to Rivera and Parker in Memphis, TN, where the mom and son were staying while he received treatment.

Writing to Rivera — and receiving letters from her friend in return — inspired Daughters to contact more people. She eventually decided to write a letter to each of her 580 Facebook friends.

“I started writing daily, and each new letter was an adrenaline rush,” she said.

It took about 18 months to complete the task, which Daughters described as a kind of “social experiment.” About 70 percent of the people she wrote to responded, either through handwritten letters or Facebook messages.

“People were touched that I took the time and effort to sit down and write to them,” she said. “I found it was bringing the best out of other people — and myself the most.”

Daughters eventually wrote about the letter-writing experience in a book, “Dear Dana: That Time I Went Crazy and Wrote All 580 of My Facebook Friends a Handwritten Letter,” published in 2022.

The success of her letter-writing experiment has inspired Daughters to embark on a similar project: mailing birthday cards to more than 600 friends.

She now averages almost 17 cards a week, which makes the resident of Tomball, TX — a Houston suburb — a regular at her local Post Office and frequent customer of the online Postal Store.

“The Postal Service is made up of unsung heroes who deliver mail and a greater connection,” she said. “I’m such a huge fan of USPS and its legion of workers that make this magic happen. It’s the vehicle by which I have reestablished so many relationships.”

Daughters, a freelance writer and sports blogger, has also become a public speaker about the power of letter writing.

“My intention in all of this is to share this amazing story I’ve been gifted with and to get people to write letters,” she said.