Not snow or rain, but retirement

Saturday, June 30, 2012
Green Forest native Ronnie Robertson has been delivering mail for the U.S. Postal Service in his hometown for 33 years. Today is his last day on the job, as he is taking his long-awaited retirement. Martin Couch / Carroll County News

GREEN FOREST -- Green Forest native Ronnie Robertson has spent the past 33 years following the well-known Postman's Creed: Neither snow nor rain nor heat nor gloom or night stays these couriers from the swift completion of their appointed rounds.

Robertson started as a substitute rural carrier in 1979 for the Green Forest post office delivering mail on a 110-mile route that sometimes, depending on the weather conditions, could takes as long as 14 hours. Today, Robertson will be delivering his last letter and taking a well-deserved retirement.

"Ronnie has faithfully served his customers through snow, ice and triple-digit heat," said Green Forest Postmaster Beverly DeWitt. "He's been a wonderful employee and he will be dearly missed by everyone."

DeWitt described Robertson as one who was "always on the ready."

"He had a spare vehicle ready to go, just in case his broke down so he could make his rounds and get his customers served," she added. "I don't know of any mail carrier who has done that."

After three years of substituting, Robertson became a full-time rural carrier and established himself on his long route through eastern Carroll County.

"I like being outside and seeing people," Robertson said as he sorted the mail preparing for the day's delivery. "It's a nice deal."

Robertson has delivered mail in ice storms before with tree limbs falling all around him. But he still got the mail delivered to everyone of his customers.

"You get to know a lot of people," he said. "And there are people I deliver to that I've known all my life. I'm definitely going to miss it."

Robertson says fishing, hunting and working on old cars will keep him busy from now on. But for the last 33 years, he's known how important his job has been to the community.

"People depend on the mail," he said. "It seems like all of that is changing these days, but in the rural areas where I've been delivering, it's pretty important to get it there."

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