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Twist and shout

This rural carrier heard her name being called by a customer who had fallen in his yard

Smiling woman stands near mail cubby
Dalton, GA, Rural Carrier Sandra “Marlene” Faulknor

Rural Carrier Sandra “Marlene” Faulknor was delivering mail recently at a home in Dalton, GA, when she heard screaming.

The cries were indecipherable at first, but she soon realized she was being called by name: “Marlene, help me, please!”

The Postal Service employee followed the voice down the home’s driveway and found the older customer on the ground in the yard. One of his legs was twisted at a painful angle.

He told her he missed one of the two steps on his porch the previous evening and fell on his hip. He had been calling for help — for about 19 hours — to no avail. The temperature the night before had dipped into the 20s.

Faulknor phoned for help and stayed with the man until an ambulance arrived.

The customer was taken to a nearby hospital and had emergency surgery on his hip, which was broken in four places. His collarbone also was broken.

The man, who has no family, told Faulknor that if she had not come when he called, he would not be here today.

Employees featured in “Heroes” receive letters of commendation through the Postmaster General Heroes’ Program. The nomination form is available on Blue.