Wednesday, February 22, 2012

Universal Language

Photo courtesy David Van Allen,
USPS Eastern Area CPS
Richard Anderson has had a 41-year career in the business of communications without ever speaking a word.

Deaf and mute since birth, he started with the United States Postal Service sorting mail in the Cleveland Processing and Distribution Plant. Then jumped at the chance when a mail carrier position was offered.

“I enjoyed being a newspaper boy when I was young, so I really wanted to try carrying mail,” signed Anderson. 

The 62-year old estimated he has walked more than 500,000 miles delivering the mail. He shared some of the trials of a carrier including the heat and cold, a hornet's nest, and a dog that chomped his leg. But communicating was not a problem.

“Sometimes customers don’t know I’m deaf and try to talk to me. Since most people don’t know sign language, I always carry a pen and paper in my pocket so we can write what we want to say.”

Several letters from satisfied customers attest to his conscientious work ethic. There are also multiple awards including those for Special Achievement and Outstanding Handicapped Employee.

Anderson has decided to retire soon. When asked what led to his stellar record, Anderson replied, “I respect the customers and supervisors, whatever the rules are,” and he added that he’s sure to put a smile on his face for even the most disgruntled individuals.

A smile speaks in any language. 

Story in part thanks to The News-Herald in Cleveland,OH.


Anonymous said...

Enjoy your retirement :)

Robert said...

Nice report, thank you. This gentleman proves that,once again, attitude is everything.

Anonymous said...

Very inspiring! This should stop some of the whining we hear...