U.S. Rep. Don Beyer, local leaders, postal officials, and members of the Collazos family officially dedicated the Jesus Collazos Post Office in Arlington yesterday. The dedication recognized the contributions to the Northern Virginia community of the beloved letter carrier, who immigrated to the region from Colombia and spent decades delivering mail in Arlington before passing away during the pandemic.
“Jesus Collazos gave so much to this community for so many years, and with the dedication of this post office, we are saying ‘thank you,’” said Rep. Beyer. “Collazos was a shining example of the American dream, and a testament to the value of public service. I thank Chairman Dorsey, the USPS and its letter carriers, and especially the Collazos family for coming together in this moment to honor and commemorate the late great Jesus Collazos.”
Jesus Collazos immigrated to Northern Virginia from Colombia in 1978 and worked for 25 years as a USPS postal carrier in Arlington. He died of COVID-19 early in the pandemic.
During his tenure as a postal carrier, Jesus left a positive impact on his community, his colleagues, and most importantly, his family. While working one of his first postal routes, he fell in love with the neighborhood and eventually bought a home there. He was passionate about ensuring his children received an education and helped put his children through school. Both ultimately received their master’s degrees. Motivated by a desire to spend more time with his grandchildren, Jesus retired in February 2019.
In early 2020 he was diagnosed with B-cell lymphoma, an aggressive cancer. While being treated, he tested positive for COVID-19 and was intubated a week later, then suffered a stroke which put him in a coma. Jesus passed away on June 6, 2020, at the age of 67. The Collazos family immediately began to receive an outpouring of love via messages, calls, cards, and meals from countless family members and friends. An outdoor memorial service for Jesus was held June 26, 2020, which saw many community members, family, and friends came together to honor his memory. His USPS coworkers opened the ceremony with a mail truck parade – all of this as a testament to Jesus’ impact on his community.
Rep. Beyer introduced a bill to rename Arlington Post Office after Collazos in early 2022; the legislation was signed into law as part of the end-of-year spending package.