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Fond farewell delivered to Whittlesea postie

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Grace Frost
Grace Frost
Hi, I'm Grace Frost. I was honoured to report for the Review as their Digital Journalist from mid-2022 to the beginning of 2024. Ive since made a move to the Herald Sun.

By Grace Frost

Whittlesea residents farewelled beloved Australia Post delivery driver Mannix Santos with an array of balloons and posters for his final delivery in the area on Friday.

Customers on Mr Santos’ regular delivery route lined their windows, front gardens and garage doors with thank you messages, balloons and drawings to commend him for his service.

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Mr Santos, who began delivering to Whittlesea seven years ago, has built a reputation for his above-and-beyond service to Whittlesea customers, priotising their trust and safe delivery of parcels.

“I’m just putting myself in their shoes, considering myself a customer as well, just making sure I’m serving them better,” Mr Santos said.
Mr Santos delivered to more than 100 Whittlsea customers on his regular route, of whom he said he knew about 60 personally – even what car they owned.

When asked why he thought Whittlesea customers loved him so much, Mr Santos was lost for an answer.

“I’m just a normal delivery guy, so I don’t know. I don’t know what the secret [is],” he said

“I’m just doing my job, keeping the parcels safe.”

But to his customers, Mr Santos was much more than ‘a normal delivery guy’.

Mr Santos, not wanting his customers to miss a delivery, was known to hand deliver parcels to customers when he saw them in town or at their workplace to ensure they didn’t have to visit the post office themselves.

COVID-19 lockdowns bought an influx of online orders and deliveries, resulting in an overwhelmed postal delivery service – but Mr Santos said he took his deliveries even more seriously during this time.

“Most of the people who are living in Whittlesea are ageing people,” he said.

“I [couldn’t] take that they were going to go to the post office just to pick up [their parcels].”

Mr Santos said he wanted to protect his customers from the health risk of traveling out of the home during the pandemic.

He said if he saw a package at the post office belonging to a customer he knew, he would hand deliver it to their door, especially as many of the deliveries were medicinal products for those with coronavirus.

“I needed to make sure that they were going to get [their parcels] on that day,” he said.

Mr Santos’ employer operates on a five-year contract with Australia Post.

After seven years in Whittlesea, the company wasn’t contracted again for Whittlesea deliveries, meaning Mr Santos will be allocated to a new area.

Though still retaining his employment position, Mr Santos said he would find it difficult to leave Whittlesea.

“I said to most of my customers, it’s very hard for me and not easy to leave Whittlesea,” Mr Santos said.

“I didn’t say to them ‘goodbye’ because I don’t want to use that word.”

On his final day, Mr Santos said he didn’t expect the abundance of farewell tributes he received.

“It’s very overwhelming and I really appreciate all the signage, balloons and everything that they posted,” he said.

Mr Santos said he hoped to one day return to Whittlesea, and was ‘very sad’ on his final day to be leaving.

“I’m hoping sooner or later maybe a few years from now I’m going back to their town and I don’t want to disconnect myself there,” he said.

“If I do have a chance to buy a property my number one [choice] is Whittlesea.”

Mr Santos shared his gratitude for the love he was shown by residents.

“I just want to thank the Whittlesea people for the love and trust that they showed to me,” he said.

“I will cherish this moment for the rest of my life,

“I’ve never [been] treated like this before, so I’m very flattered. And like I said, I’m just doing my job.”

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  1. We want him back !!! I recently had a terrible pregnancy and mannix would bring the parcels I side as I couldn’t, it mentioned a great deal to us !

  2. Mannix you have been a great inspiration for others, thank you for all the wonderful work you have given to our community Whittlesea.

  3. You incredible man! You’re face and presence will be so missed by all here in Whittlesea. People like you make the world a better place. Thank you for making me spend so much money knowing I get to see your smiling face 🙂 good luck

  4. Also happened in Doreen out beloved Postie Jo moved suburbs too. After many years doing an amazing job like Mannix – Not fair..!!!!

  5. We miss you already Mannix. Whittlesea is not the same without you. I know you’ll be great wherever you are, because you are a wonderful human. We hope to see you soon.

  6. So missed mannix!! You were part of the heart of this town and it feels not right not seeing you around the streets or dropping off parcels and having a chat.
    Hope to see you in a few years from now. Wishing you all the best.

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