‘Gathering place’ could be lost

Published 12:19 am Saturday, July 9, 2011

Bob Olive and Don Gantt are among locals who meet daily at the post office.

In the town of Gantt, there are two places for a good conversation – the Gator Grocery and the Post Office.

Seperated only by a glass door, it’s easy to see how the traffic would flow from one spot to the other. It’s the only spot in town where one can get a cold Coca-Cola and a roll of stamps at the same place.

There are 139 boxes inside the Gantt Post Office, some of which have been used by the same family for more than 50 years, said Ronnie Jackson, Gantt’s officer in charge.

“A post office is the corner post of a community,” he said. “It would be sad to see it close.”

Don Grant and Bob Olive are two box owners who travel daily to the post office. They’re also two residents who were “sickened” to hear the news the branch could close.

“It’s our gathering place,” Olive said. “If it closes, what happens then? There’s a lot of us who have physical difficulties and to drive 20-25 miles (to another branch) makes an undue hardship. Plus, this is a place for us to meet.”

Grant said he didn’t think it was “right” to close the location.

Postal Service officials said Thursday’s meeting was only the first step in researching a possible closure.