By Joseph Robertia
Living in a small community like Kasilof, it’s easy to take for granted the smiles and warm greeting of the people who make up daily routines. But with longtime U.S. Postal Service clerk Carol Marsh retiring at the end of the month, there will soon be one less familiar face to see while doing mail transactions.
“I’ll still be living here, I just won’t be working at the post office anymore,” she said. Her last day at work is Feb 28.
This could come as a big change to Kasilof postal customers, since for nearly 30 years Marsh has worked the counter of the Kasilof Post Office, both at its current building and back when it used to be located inside the store now known as the Kasilof Mercantile.
“It was tiny, dirty and pretty horrible,” Marsh said of the original post office.
Born and raised in Anchorage, Marsh began working for the USPS in 1984, not long after graduating high school and college with a science degree. She initially hoped to pursue a career in a biological field, and worked seasonally for the Alaska Department of Fish and Game.
But permanent job openings were few and far between, and with the passing of time and growing fiscal responsibilities, she wanted employment that was more stable and full-time to help her build a life.
“When I was seasonal for Fish and Game, the bank wouldn’t even give me a loan,” she said. “I wanted a family, a house, horses, a garden — all the things that I have now. The post office job enabled me to do all that.”
The first few years she was working at the post office, she was stationed in Soldotna, and the work was a lot different then.
“It was all fan scales back then, that’s how we weighed everything. And there was lots of paper and hard copies for everything. It wasn’t like now where everything is digital weighing, and immediate, with electronic scanning and on a satellite system. We’re living in a technical age now,” she said.