Member Stories

Sunnyvale neighbors rally to support mailman facing tragedy

Written by Shannon Toliver

Jun is the friendly mailman for Ortega Park – a neighborhood in Sunnyvale, CA. When long-time neighbor Steve saw the USPS worker in tears one day, he knew something was wrong.

Rather than greeting Steve with his usual smile, Jun shared the news that his daughter-in-law had just passed away from an unexpected brain aneurysm, leaving behind a 2-month-old and an 18-month-old baby. His family was shattered.

In order to help his family cover funeral expenses, Jun couldn’t afford to take any time off work, working weekend shifts to support his grandchildren who had just lost their mother.

So, Steve posted on Nextdoor to encourage his neighbors to offer hugs and words of sympathy to their mailman. But Jun’s story struck a personal chord in neighbor Murrali, who was inspired to contribute more than condolences.

Murrali and his wife Mala began fundraising for Jun by posting in their local Nextdoor neighborhood. The response was overwhelmingly positive. Neighbors from Ortega Park and surrounding communities were eager to help Jun’s family through donations, homemade meals, and toys for the children.

In only 2 weeks, the community was able to raise nearly $9000, leaving Jun speechless and beyond grateful. Here is a video of Jun sharing his appreciation:

Thanks to the generosity of his Nextdoor neighbors, Jun is now able to take some time off of work to travel home to the Philippines and be with the rest of his family during this healing period. It is truly an inspiration to see the extent people will go to help a neighbor during times of hardship.

If you would like to support Jun’s family, you can find his GoFundMe page here.

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