Postal employees are known for letting “neither snow nor rain nor heat nor gloom of night” stop them from delivering the mail. Those who choose to exercise their firearm freedoms can add burglars, robbers and carjackers to the list as well. Luckily for them, the following seven postal employees were ready to deliver more than parcels when trouble appeared.
An alert postman in rural Reno County, Kan., rounded up a posse of sorts after witnessing a suspicious vehicle cruising up the driveway of a home where he knew the owners were away. The postal worker and four armed, local residents returned to the home to find it being burglarized by two men. They ordered the pair to lie on the ground and alerted sheriff’s deputies, who soon arrived on the scene. (The Eagle, Wichita, Kan., 1/1/1997)
When the doorbell rang at Doug Ferdig’s Aurora, Colo., home, he thought it was just a salesman. But when he looked out the window, he saw a man walking around the side of the house. Ferdig armed himself with a pistol and then dialed 911. As he talked to the dispatcher, he heard noises coming from upstairs. The 41-year-old mail man rushed up and confronted the intruder as he came out of the master bedroom where his wife was sleeping. When the man did not stop, Ferdig fired, wounding the intruder—a man whose police record included several arrests for burglary and related charges. (The Denver Post, Denver, Colo., 1/1/1989)
Retired postal clerk Clark Goodwin, 68, saw a pair of men leave his next-door neighbor’s house and try to break into the neighbor’s car. When he challenged them, one man fired at him with a .22-cal. pistol. Goodwin opened up with his own pistol, routing the two. The next-door neighbor was found severely beaten and rolled up in a carpet. Police speculated that the criminals planned to return and kill him. Goodwin was honored by the St. Louis Grand Jury Ass’n for his action. (The Globe-Democrat, St. Louis, Mo., 3/1/1982)
Chicago, Ill., postal worker Randall Gordon relied on his Marine training when two gunmen threatened to harm his wife and baby unless he gave them money. While one gangster held his family hostage in a car, Gordon took the other into his house to get the money. When the gunman began ransacking the bedroom, Gordon pulled a pistol from under a pillow and shot him in the arm and leg. Gordon then got a shotgun and crawled up to the car and surprised the second thug. Disregarding orders to surrender, the man tried to draw his gun. Gordon shot him. Both wounded gunmen soon were arrested. (The Chicago Daily News, Chicago, Ill., 6/1/1976)
When confronted by an armed man in the Hibernia, N.J., post office, postmaster Francis Yuresko produced a gun of his own. “The man changed his mind, turned and walked out,” Yuresko said. (Daily Record, Parsippany, N.J., 9/1/1972)
When Buskirk, N.Y., Postmaster Paul Dreher surprised two men trying to open the post office safe, he called State Police, then got a revolver from his home nearby and confronted the pair. They started to flee by car, but stopped when Dreher fired a warning shot into the air. He held them at gunpoint until police arrived. (The Knickerbocker News, Albany, N.Y., 3/1/1969)
In Millers Tavern, Va., Assistant Postmaster A.R. Watts and store owner S.S. Courtney closed their combination store and post office for the night. A short time later, Courtney, who lived nearby, was alerted by the sound of breaking glass. As he looked across the street, he observed a man entering the store through the shattered front window. Courtney phoned Watts, and they headed for the store. When they met at the building, the two men entered the building with guns in hand. There they found a would-be robber hiding behind some boxes, and they held the man at gunpoint until police arrived. (Times-Dispatch, Richmond, Va., 2/1/1967)