‘An extended family’: Retiring Green Oaks mail carrier reflects on 43 years on the job

When Amy Becker graduated high school at 16, she wasn’t sure what direction she wanted to go in life.

But she knew she enjoyed working outside and with people, and that’s why, at age 18, she became a U.S. Postal Service mail carrier.

“It was never work for me,” Becker said. “It was always a pleasure to see what new experience I was going to get into that day.”

Now 61, Becker is hanging up her uniform and turning in her mail truck keys. Her last day of work on her route in the Saddle Hill subdivision of Green Oaks, after 43 years on the job, is June 1.

Becker said when she started in 1981, she expected to stay for at least 30 years, or until she was 55 years old. But when each of those milestones came and went, she couldn’t find a reason to leave.

“The neighborhood, the people, have just welcomed me into their families,” Becker said. “It’s like an extended family, they are just so friendly and they’re wonderful people out there.”

Members of the community, including 14-year resident Kirk Ergang, have planned a retirement celebration for Becker on Sunday, June 9. The event will take place from 1 to 3 p.m. outside of the Oak Grove School in Green Oaks, and will feature cake, posters to sign and a photo book full of pictures of Becker with people and dogs from the neighborhood.

“There’s not one negative thing I’ve ever heard about her,” Ergang said. “Her service to us has been exemplary … above and beyond what you would expect from someone delivering mail to you.”

Becker has worked on the same route since the mid-80s, and said that watching kids in the neighborhood grow up, and some of them start their own families in the neighborhood, has been one of the great joys of her job.

Another joy is the dogs — Becker and Ergang both said that dogs in the neighborhood recognize the sound of Becker’s mail truck from a block away and always are excited to see her and greet her.

  Mail carrier Amy Becker greets Fiona and Kirk Ergang on her route in Green Oaks Thursday. Fiona greets her every day. John Starks/

A resident of Antioch, Becker said she plans to spend more time with her husband, her son and his family, as well as her mom and her 11 siblings. While she said she will miss her daily interactions with friends in the neighborhood, she sees her retirement as the beginning of a new part of her life.

“I know it won’t be the end of my friendships,” Becker said. “I told them, ‘Don’t be surprised if you see me driving through the neighborhood.’”

The celebration in June will give residents the chance to express their gratitude for the service Becker has provided for decades and for the kindness, passion for her job and reliability Ergang said Becker exemplifies.

“It’s more than the mail,” Ergang said. “It’s really just a fond farewell for her, for a job well done.”

Mail carrier Amy Becker on her route in Green Oaks Thursday. Community members are holding a retirement celebration for her on June 9. John Starks/jstarks@dailyherald.
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