Last day delivering mail

Bill Trampleasure was a man of many passions. Whether you knew him through peace, prayer, politics, poetry, or public, I think he found his best peace when working for the Post Office. Bill was a natural at delivering mail. He loved to walk, loved to meet people, and loved to be outdoors (our family story was that his parents met while hiking on Mt. Tamalpias in Marin County). I think much of his poetry was inspired by his time on his route.

I first started seeing my dad on his route when I would walk to third grade at Oxford School in Berkeley. I was lucky enough that my walk included part of his route. I’d see him every once in a while, and I would always get a hug. Later he became a “T-6,” which meant he had five routes he would deliver, each one one day per week (this is how the Post Office gives you six days of mail and the Letter Carriers only work five days a week), and one of his routes included our house.

Most of his time at the Post Office he delivered mail in the region north of Hearst Street and east of Martin Luther King, Jr. Way (he was proud when Berkeley changed the name of Grove St to Martin Luther King, Jr. Way).

His final years were on a route that included the Berkeley Rose Garden, and he loved stopping there for lunch. On his last day, I walked with him most of the day, and took photos at various locations. Below are a collection of these photos, which he proudly displayed on a board at home with his “Last punch bunch” t-shirt. If you recognize any of the people in the photos, please add a comment to identify them, and if you are in contact with them, please let them know about this site.

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Two letters about hills and mountains

The following are letters to the Berkeley Daily Gazette written by Bill in 1971, published in the “The open forum” section. (Information on Reverend Doug Smith’s Vietnam War Protest on Mt. Shasta can be found here.)

From the Mountain Top

(published August 20, 1971)

Tuesday morning I watched the sunrise from the summit of Mt. Shasta. I was with my friend Dough Smith, a man of peace. I had climbed Shasta on Monday, the 26th anniversary of the sunburst explosion over Nagasaki. I had climbed to be with Doug, to hug Doug, to support Doug. I had climbed to draw closer to my God and to myself. I had climbed because Shasta had begun to cast her spell over me since Doug had first shared with some of us his hopes and plans for the Shasta project. Finish Reading: Two letters about hills and mountains