Letter Carrier Donna Kessler was delivering mail one day last year in a Fort Wayne, IN, neighborhood when she came upon a little girl in a pink backpack, sobbing on a sidewalk.
Kessler stopped to check on the child, who was 5 and had just finished her first day of kindergarten.
The girl was lost and didn’t know her address or phone number, but she did have her mother’s name and number in the backpack.
Kessler called the child’s mom, who said her daughter was supposed to be in an afterschool program with an older sibling.
While the woman made a 20-minute drive from work, Kessler and a concerned neighborhood resident comforted the lass, who had inadvertently followed schoolmates leaving the building.
“By this stage, she was feeling safe and we talked and shared a tangerine together,” the Postal Service employee recalled.
The girl’s mother soon arrived, distressed by the situation but grateful for her daughter’s safety.
The woman also recognized Kessler as the former owner of a local restaurant where the woman and her husband had dined the day they were married, and she later reached out to offer additional thanks.
“I was relieved it turned out fine,” Kessler said. “People don’t understand that letter carriers do so much more than deliver the mail. We keep an eye on your house, your neighborhood, your grandparents, your pets and even your children.”