Floyd Martin has worked for the US Postal Service in Marietta, Georgia for over 20 years, 35 total years with the USPS.
20 years is more than enough time to get to know the folks along your delivery route, and that's exactly what Martin did.
He made an effort to get to know folks, and to make their lives better, and all of that positive energy was returned when Floyd retired.
The neighborhood he delivered to decided to throw a block party to celebrate Martin's retirement, and to celebrate the part he had played in everyone's lives over the past 2 decades.
Local journalist and friend of Floyd, Jennifer Brett, traveled Floyd's route with him on the last day before his retirement. She got to see customers come out to congratulate him on his retirement and thank him for being a part of their lives.
Lorraine Wascher was waiting for him today. She's been a stop on his route for more than 20 years. "He always had a… https://t.co/IUAGg8BbiT— Jennifer Brett (@Jennifer Brett)1558557674.0
Many even brought him presents.
Lots of the "mail" Floyd picked up today was hand-delivered. "My people are so good to me," he said. "I'm going to… https://t.co/bogLV3acz0— Jennifer Brett (@Jennifer Brett)1558557768.0
Floyd has had a definite presence in the community during his time as a mail carrier.
He has always tried to brighten people's lives, even going so far as to carry treats for the local dogs and cats.
"He feeds all the cats," said Peggy Corn, who's been on Floyd's route for decades. "They all know him, and they kno… https://t.co/pNMCW7k4KY— Jennifer Brett (@Jennifer Brett)1558558184.0
Morgan Beatton and River, 18 months, waited for Mr. Floyd today. As always he had treats for their dog, Sage. He sa… https://t.co/frJRZ57zEa— Jennifer Brett (@Jennifer Brett)1558558799.0
To show Martin how much they appreciated his contributions to their lives, over 300 people turned up to a surprise block party honoring him.
Once his very last shift was finally over, the neighborhood had another surprise for Mr. Floyd. 300+ people came to… https://t.co/07yd5OPs5S— Jennifer Brett (@Jennifer Brett)1558663834.0
Many who came are teens and young adults who have grown up seeing Floyd every day, and knowing he was always good for a kind word—or a treat!
People stood in line all night for hugs and photos. Floyd's known these guys since they were babies. "Now you guys… https://t.co/12oIq12gJD— Jennifer Brett (@Jennifer Brett)1558664219.0
During Floyd's speech, he talked about how the community was there for him in his times of need too.
"You were there when I needed you, even if you didn't know it."
Floyd has seen his people through many of life’s changes. Some good, some bad. They’ve done the same for him. “You… https://t.co/cb6IUic0jo— Jennifer Brett (@Jennifer Brett)1558667263.0
He had some words of wisdom too:
Floyd said tonight’s sendoff was the nicest thing anyone’s ever done for him. His parting words: “Continue to take… https://t.co/QU0jJER6yo— Jennifer Brett (@Jennifer Brett)1558667860.0
Floyd revealed to Brett that he has always dreamed of visiting Hawaii, and the neighborhood started a GoFundMe to help him realize that dream.
It has since raised over $25,000 (the original goal was $5000), so Mr. Martin will finally be able to have his dream vacation.
People absolutely loved Floyd's story on Twitter.
@Jennifer__Brett What an incredible, joyful thread! Thanks for bringing a smile to my face today. Made me miss home a bit too.— Jess Smith (@Jess Smith)1558706622.0
@Jennifer__Brett Such a kind and giving soul. Good luck to you Floyd in your well-earned retirement!— Hans Luxemburger (@Hans Luxemburger)1558573179.0
@MichMarz @Jennifer__Brett I think the world has tons of Floyds. What we need are more neighbors who NOTICE the Flo… https://t.co/EBiY0nIss4— ariel (@ariel)1558711080.0
@Jennifer__Brett Great read to start the day. Floyd's work was about a daily wellness check on a community, as much… https://t.co/3FeyLbCqjU— Andi (@Andi)1558696231.0
@Jennifer__Brett This is the most beautiful thread I’ve ever seen. I really sat here and teared up. Omg. https://t.co/mHabVqOWBR— ✷𝕿𝕽𝕬𝕻𝕮𝕽𝖄✷ (@✷𝕿𝕽𝕬𝕻𝕮𝕽𝖄✷)1558713331.0
Many shared stories of family who were also letter carriers, and the impact they had on their communities.
@Jennifer__Brett Just remembered I had a pic of grandpa Heg in his uniform https://t.co/SlSSEeeEB6— prayformojo (@prayformojo)1558679044.0
@Jennifer__Brett @ddale8 My Uncle Reno was a letter carrier in downtown South San Francisco for 38 years. Forty ye… https://t.co/K3GJhcKJWz— 🌼🌞🌼 Maria McGrath 🌼🌞🌼 (@🌼🌞🌼 Maria McGrath 🌼🌞🌼)1558705759.0
@Jennifer__Brett My Dad was a letter carrier on the same route for 30 years and the people really did treat him lik… https://t.co/n53jkrA9HI— Steve Olson (@Steve Olson)1558718327.0
Many mail carriers care about their communities, but not many take that caring as far as Floyd.
Sometimes it's the small gestures, the daily greetings, dog bones, lollipops, and holiday cards, that really show how much love there is in a community.
If you appreciate the work your mail carrier does, a small thank you card or a bottle of water on a hot day are great ways to show it!