By STAR–EXPONENT STAFF
The U.S. Postal Service on Friday confirmed that the employee struck and killed by a vehicle the previous morning outside the Culpeper Post Office was 62-year-old Sara Miller.
Miller served as the post office’s lead sales and services associate and had been a postal employee since January 2000. She died at the scene as a result of her injuries, according to the Culpeper Police Department.
The incident was reported about 9:44 a.m., according to Culpeper police spokesman Lt. Jeff Dodson. Officials blocked the area around East Locust Street to traffic and wrapped the scene of the dock area behind the post office with police tape.
On East Street, directly behind the post office, people gathered outside various businesses while a news helicopter from Washington circled overhead.
According to friends, Miller was from Rappahannock County.
“Sara loved to laugh, had a dry sense of humor, like mine, so we got along well,” said community leader Nan Butler Roberts, who went to Rappahannock County High School with Miller.
She, like others, remembered friendly interactions with Miller at the local post office.
“She always gave me a cheery hello and we’d chat a few moments. She never failed to ask how my mother was doing. I will miss seeing her in the post office.”
The postal service offered its condolences.
“We are all devastated by the news of this tragic accident and our thoughts and prayers are with the employee’s family,” according to a statement from U.S. Postal Service spokesman Philip Bogenberger.
“The Postal Services’ Employee Assistance Program will be made available to the family and is on site to counsel employees as they deal with the loss of their co-worker,” he said.
The post office remained open while two sheriff’s deputies stood outside.
Outside the post office Friday morning, customer Cristol Jones remembered the victim as someone she knew from her native Rappahannock County.
“Every time I walked into this post office, it was like a family exchange with Sara,” Jones said. “It just feels funny walking in here today and not seeing her. I wish it didn’t happen,” she said of the fatal accident.
Inside the post office, none of the regular faces were working at the counter as postal workers from around the state filled in as Culpeper employees grieved the loss of their coworker.
“We’re very saddened by the loss our employee and postal family member,” said Janice Atherly, district manager at a Richmond post office. “It is a community loss.”
Dodson said the vehicle’s driver remained at the scene and was interviewed by Culpeper Police, the lead agency handling the incident. Following the investigation, the findings will be presented to the Culpeper County Commonwealth’s Attorney to determine if any crime was committed, according to spokesman Lt. Jeff Dodson.
Police declined to immediately release further details about the incident, including the type of vehicle and the driver’s name.
Anyone with additional information is asked to call Dodson at 540/829-5526, anonymously to Culpeper Crime Solvers at 540/727-0300 or to email@example.com.
Services for Miller will take place at Found & Sons Funeral Chapel at 2 p.m. Monday.