A Mail Carrier's Instincts Save a Life and Start a Friendship

This mail carrier noticed something wasn't right at one of the homes on her route. Her quick action made all the difference.

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- Posted on Dec 19, 2017

Mail carrier Lisa Sweeney by her mail truck

In late 2017, at a certain holiday celebration in Staten Island, New York, the attendees had more to be grateful for than most.

Four months ago, an 86-year-old woman named Marie Boyer fell in her home. For days, she was incapacitated, immobile. Because her windows were shut, no one could hear her cry out.

On the fourth day, her regular mail carrier, Lisa Sweeney, returned from vacation and noticed something was amiss. Though she and Marie hadn’t had much conversation over the years, Lisa knew her customer’s habits. The pile of mail in the mailbox, untouched garbage cans by the curb and the car in the driveway were clear warning signs. She knocked on a neighbor’s door, but he’d been away on vacation too and didn’t know anything. “I just had a feeling in my heart that Marie was inside,” Lisa recalls. She called 911 and continued on her route, but kept circling back to Marie’s house until police arrived.

Rescuers broke in through a back window to discover Marie unconscious. Learning that Marie was still alive, Lisa burst into tears, so happy that her customer of 11 years had been rescued.

Since that August day, Marie has moved into an assisted-living facility, but Lisa visits her regularly and still brings her mail. They even celebrated Marie’s 87th  birthday at a restaurant across the street. Lisa’s son has been known to stop by to see Marie too. The bond forged that summer day continues stronger than ever.

On Thanksgiving Day, Lisa Sweeney’s home on Staten Island held extra guests: Marie and her son, daughter-in-law and daughter. It was their first Thanksgiving together as a family since Marie’s own mother passed away.

Lisa brought Marie over early to watch the parade on TV together—as well as one of the turkeys frying outside. Marie also got in some quality animal time with Lisa’s six cats and one dog. “I had to check her pocketbook before she left,” Lisa jokes, “just to make sure she didn’t take one home.”

For Lisa, what happened was no chance event. “To me, I think things happen for a reason,” she says. “Marie has a new lease on life.” And, it appears, another daughter to love.

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