A million-plus miles of delivering mail, Bobby Brown looks forward to retirement

Neither rain nor sleet nor snow kept Bobby Brown from his appointed rounds of delivering the U.S. mail each day. By Tina Brooks

This week my Washington column is dedicated to a very special person in our community. Postman Bobby Brown of Tiger Valley is soon to be retired.

I have known Bobby for years. He is a dedicated and hard working, honest and reliable person. I have heard nothing but good things from his customers on his mail route. One stated, “Unlike the Christmas icon he resembles, who only comes once a year if we’ve been good, Bobby is reliable and always cheerful and brings us presents every day, whether we’ve been good or not.”

Another said they will miss talking to Bobby on his route each day.

Tina Brooks, the Washington Postmaster, commented that she was pleased to work with someone of Bobby’s work ethic.

“He comes to work with a ‘can-do attitude’ and goes out of his way to get the job done. The fact that Bobby was able to maintain his safety record under the management of several different postmasters throughout the years speaks volumes about his outstanding performance.”

This is a true example of the long standing relationship that has been established between Bobby, his customers, and his colleagues.

Bobby has been a full time employee of the Washington Post Office since November 1999. He worked 17 years before that as the substitute for his current route and as a desk clerk at the same post office. He has enjoyed all of his years serving the people in the Town of Washington and its rural surroundings.

He has worked under numerous postmasters and others in Washington, including Carol Miller, Linda Butler, Yvonne Jarrell, Johnna Taylor, Tina Brooks, and Belinda McLawhorn.

And on April 1, 2014, he was awarded membership to a very elite group: the National Safety Council’s Million Mile Club. This tremendous milestone is for driving a cumulative total of 1 million miles (or 30 years) without having a preventable motor vehicle accident. Bobby received a certificate of appreciation and a plaque from the National Safety Council.

Bobby is the father of 6 children: two of his own and four with his current wife, Debbie, who he’s been married to for the last twenty years. Together they have 16 grandchildren and 8 great-grandchildren; some here in Virginia and several in South Carolina.

He has lived in Culpeper and Rappahannock County his entire life; and his family before him for many generations.

His favorite after work pastimes are antiquing, gardening and working to keep his yard kept up and pretty. Bobby also enjoys working in his workshop and repairing, refinishing, and building furniture. He has worked on many projects for local residents.

He is looking forward to retiring but knows he will miss all of his customers who he has visited with “at the Mailbox” over the years.

As for the future, Bobby says he is looking forward to spending a lot more time tending to his vegetable garden, hiking and exploring his artistic side. And Bobby loves playing with the couple’s dog, Bella. According to Debbie, “Bella loves him dearly and gets all excited when he comes home from somewhere and follows him outside whenever he goes outside.”

Debbie is looking forward to Bobby’s retirement, including sitting on the rocker out front and watching the sun set over the mountains. According to Debbie they “make each other laugh and really enjoy each other’s company.”

If you are out and about and see Bobby on the route or in town please congratulate him on a job well done. His smile will be sorely missed, but the good memories will always stay with us.

Bobby as you move ahead into retirement, remember that you left behind a legacy of achievement, encouragement and work ethic that will never leave us. On April 30th, you will close the door to the past, open the door to the future, close your eyes, take a deep breath, step on through and start a new chapter in your life with your lovely wife and family.

Bobby, I wish you well on your retirement.

By the way, Brian Schultz will be taking over Bobby’s route. According to Brian, “It will be big shoes to fill and it will be a privilege to serve the community and zip code.”

I hope that everyone enjoyed the warm temperatures last week. As for this week the cool days are back, and that means jackets or sweaters to wear. Crazy weather indeed.