Not a drive-through

“Neither snow nor rain nor heat nor gloom of night stays these couriers
from the swift completion of their appointed rounds.”

The U.S. Postal Service’s unofficial creed

By RICHARD LUKEN
Register Reporter

Register/Richard Luken
Bonnie Dalsing, left, and Judy Robinson survey the damage of the interior of the Colony post office after a pickup driven by John W. Francis drove into the building’s front entrance. The accident left a gaping hole in the entrance. Crews were on the scene shortly thereafter to board up the opening and install a temporary door in order for the post office to remain open. Neither Francis nor Robinson, the only person in the building at the time of the accident, were injured.

COLONY — Bonnie Dalsing and Sandy Robinson have an addendum to the famed postal adage about staying on task regardless of whatever obstacles lie ahead — wayward pickups.
Dalsing, Colony’s postmaster, and Robinson kept the Colony post office open Monday afternoon, even after the building sustained dramatic damage when a pickup driven by John W. Francis of Westphalia crashed into its front and created a gaping hole.
“The building’s still structurally sound,” said Dalsing, as she swept shards of glass into a pile for later cleanup. “It’s a mess, but we can keep going.”
The accident occurred just minutes before noon Monday.
Chuck Robinson, Sandy’s husband, was waiting outside the post office’s front door in his vehicle to pick up his wife for lunch.
That was when he noticed Francis stopped behind him along Broad Street.
“He was just waiting there for a couple of minutes,” Chuck Robinson said. “I was watching him in my mirror, and the next thing you know, he zipped around my truck and drove straight into the building.”
Sandy Robinson, on duty Monday as a substitute for Dalsing, was behind the front counter, just a few feet from Francis’ pickup as it slammed into the entrance.
“Stuff started falling from the ceiling, so I ran to the back door,” she said.
“The scary part was that he wouldn’t lift his foot off the accelerator,” Chuck Robinson said. “After I realized that Sandy was OK, I started yelling at him to turn his truck off.”
Neither Francis nor the Robinsons were injured.
“We’re lucky Sandy wasn’t walking out the front door as it happened,” Chuck Robinson said. “She would have been right in his path.”

DALSING, who was off duty Monday, was summoned to the scene to assist with cleanup.
They cheerfully, albeit wearily, greeted passersby and customers still intent on sending letters and packages throughout the afternoon.
“We could work out the back door if we needed to,” Dalsing said.
There was no need. Crews boarded up the large hole in the entrance and installed a temporary front door in order for Dalsing to reopen on time this morning.
Despite the damage to the building, the truck was virtually unscathed.
“All I could see was that the bumper was knocked down about an inch,” Chuck Robinson said.
Attempts to contact Francis were unsuccessful.