The Life and Legacy of Jesus Collazos

Courtesy of the family of Jesus Collazos
Courtesy of the family of Jesus Collazos

In the past year, Arlington honored late local mailman Jesus Collazos by proposing a bill to name the United States Postal Service Post Office on George Mason Drive after him. This bill was proposed by U.S. Representative Don Beyer, from Virginia’s 8th District, in March of 2022 and was passed in December. The post office will officially hold the name “Jesus Antonio Collazos Post Office” in late March. 

Collazos emigrated from Columbia in 1978 to start a new life in the United States. He followed his mother and sisters to Northern Virginia, where he initially worked as a taxi driver and hotel valet. Collazos began working as an Arlington County mailman in 1994 at the post office on George Mason Drive.  During his 25 years of service, his kind spirit and outgoing personality made a mark. Collazos passed away of COVID-19 in June of 2020, less than a year after retiring in hopes of spending more time with his grandkids.

“I think he wasn’t ever nervous or scared to talk to anybody. He knew a little, but about a lot, and always knew how to carry a conversation. Whether it be about politics, sports, or movies, he was a person that never stopped learning,” Collazos’ son, Michael Collazos, said.

His rewarding job allowed him to find where he wanted to settle with his family. On his delivery route, he found the perfect house. 

“[He found the house] because he used to help [the previous resident] take her trash out, or she would say, ‘Jesus, something was wrong with my TV.’ I don’t think you were supposed to be doing that, going in, but that’s what he did; he bent the rules when he needed to,” Collazos said.

The “Mayor of 24th St” was adored both as a mail carrier and neighborhood resident. During the holidays, he would respond to local kids’ letters to Santa. He was also known for giving personal advice.

“His nickname would be ‘Jesus I know a guy Collazos’ because if you needed a tree cut, he knew somebody to do that. If you were buying a car, he knew someone selling a car. If you were buying a house or you needed a sitter, [he] connected everybody,” Collazos said. 

After his passing, neighbors came together and put out candles and cards for anyone to sign in front of his home. It was evident that the community had lost more than just a mail carrier. 

“To see everyone show up, show up, show out, it was wild, an intense feeling. Some people even thought of him as a father figure,” Collazos said. 

He will be remembered for his gentleness and “it is what it is” mindset. Collazos united the community, and his impact will last more than a lifetime. Neighbors are forever grateful that Collazos was a part of their lives, and the naming of the post office solidifies his inspirational legacy in Arlington. 

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Scarlett Gray
Scarlett Gray, News Editor
Scarlett Gray is a junior and this year's News Editor. She spends the majority of her time swimming but also enjoys reading, baking and hanging out with her friends. Returning for her second year on staff, she is so excited to meet all the new reporters and see what stories will be covered!

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