Joshua Davis usually spends each June delivering congratulatory cards to new high school graduates, but this year, things are a little different.
Because so many graduation ceremonies have been canceled due to the coronavirus pandemic — including the ceremony for Davis’s own son — the Jackson, MI, letter carrier decided to write letters of encouragement to almost a dozen graduates on his route.
“Though they won’t have the memories of going to the prom, a graduation ceremony or saying goodbye to friends they’ve known since first grade, I want them to not be deterred from finding some happiness in this whole thing,” said Davis, who signed each note with “your mailman, Josh.”
Davis is one of several Postal Service employees who are doing their part to celebrate the class of 2020.
Joshua Crowell, a Concord, NH, rural carrier, bought $5 Dunkin’ Donuts gift cards with his own money and delivered them to new graduates on his route, along with handwritten notes celebrating their achievement.
Meanwhile, Carlos Rodriguez, a Guaynabo, PR, letter carrier, was among front-line workers who delivered commencement addresses that NPR broadcast last week in a special series.
Rodriguez, who has worked through several major storms that affected the island, told graduates that four words — resilience, commitment, kindness and balance — represent the “pillars of life” that have helped him through trying situations.
“In Puerto Rico, we have a phrase that unites the whole island to stand together against any adversity: ‘Puerto Rico se levanta.’ Puerto Rico will rise,” Rodriguez said. “To you, I say: El mundo se levanta. The world will rise. You are here because you, too, have seen trying times and endured them. You are capable and can take on your next challenge.”