KENTWOOD, Mich. (WOOD) — A mail carrier in West Michigan has received the highest award in the U.S. Postal Service and is credited with saving a man’s life.
Wilma Daley, who has worked for the Postal Service for 25 years, was awarded the Postmaster General Hero Award.
On December 22 of last year, she was on her normal route in Kentwood on a cold winter day when she noticed a man on the ground in a driveway.
“His driveway was just full of ice,” Daley said.
Retired Kentwood Police Sergeant Bob Streeter said he was in a rush to get breakfast in the icy conditions.
“I’m pushing the trash cart out, slipped. Feet went up from under me, the trash cart out to the street, and I fell on my right shoulder and broke it,” Streeter said. “I couldn’t move, and the longer I was there, the colder I got. My phone was under my body.”
Daley approached him to see how she could help.
“I’m like, ‘What are you doing out here?’” Daley said.
As a former officer, Streeter said he did not panic, but he had no idea how long he would be there. He estimated he was on the ground for more than 30 minutes before Daley arrived.
“To be honest with you, I thought I’d freeze to death,” Streeter said.
Daley flagged down a delivery driver who was also in the neighborhood.
“I tried to pick him up, and it just — he’s too tall,” Daley said.
Daley said she keeps extra watch over her customers, especially seniors.
“My dad, he passed at home, and he was in Indiana. And the mailman is the one that went and got the apartment office, because he had two days of worth of mail, and he knew that my dad always picked up his mail every day,” Daley said.
It was Streeter who reached out to the Postal Service to nominate Daley for the Postmaster General Hero Award.
Daley hopes her story can inspire others.
“Look out for your neighbor. Look out for the person … that you see every day,” Daley said. “And every once in a while, just gander over, say hello. It doesn’t hurt because, you know, you just never know.”