During the week of the 12-year anniversary of the anthrax attacks, Congresswoman Eleanor Holmes Norton (D-DC) today introduced a resolution honoring the late Joseph Curseen, Jr. and Thomas Morris, Jr., the United States Postal Service (USPS) employees who died as a result of the attacks while working at the USPS processing facility located at 900 Brentwood Road, NE, which is now renamed for them, the three other Americans who died from exposure to anthrax during the attacks, and all USPS employees for their consistent and exemplary service to the country despite attacks on federal facilities throughout the U.S., such as the anthrax attack, and a lack of deserved funding support from the Congress.
"Joseph Curseen, Jr. and Thomas Morris, Jr., both native Washingtonians raised in this city, gave decades of dedicated service to the United States Postal Service," said Norton, a senior member of the House Committee on Oversight and Government Reform, which has jurisdiction over the USPS. "We honor them and we also honor the three other Americans who lost their lives during the attacks, and all U.S. Postal Service workers for serving the nation with consistency in the face of unpredictable danger. The deaths of the two Postal Service employees and the three other Americans shook the city and our country. Twelve years after the worst biological attacks in the nation's history, we remember the dedication of both men and the courage of postal employees, who continued to work then as now."
In 2002, Norton co-sponsored the bill that renamed the USPS processing facility on Brentwood Avenue, NE the "Joseph Curseen Jr. and Thomas Morris, Jr. Processing and Distribution Center." In 2010, Norton introduced a resolution directing the Citizens' Stamp Advisory Committee to recommend to the U.S. Postmaster General to issue a postal stamp honoring the lives and dedication of both Curseen and Morris. The committee may issue commemorative stamps five years after the death of an
individual, and Norton continues to urge the issuance of the stamp.
The text of Norton's resolution follows.
Honoring the lives, work, and sacrifice of Joseph Curseen, Jr., and Thomas Morris, Jr., the two United States Postal Service employees and Washington, DC, natives who died as a result of their contact with anthrax while working at the United States Postal Facility located at 900 Brentwood Road, NE, Washington, DC, during the anthrax attacks in the fall of 2001, United States Postal Service employees, who have continued to work diligently in service to the people of the United States notwithstanding the anthrax attacks, as well as the three other Americans who died and the 17 who became ill in the attacks.
Whereas the founders of the United States, recognizing the importance of a national system of mail to the new country, gave Congress the constitutional authority "To establish post offices and post roads";
Whereas employees of the United States Postal Service provide indispensable public service and honorably represent the United States on a daily basis;
Whereas despite the other terrorist attacks in federal facilities throughout the United States, including the anthrax attacks more than ten years ago, Postal Service employees continue to risk their lives daily to serve the people of the United States;
Whereas Joseph P. Curseen, Jr., and Thomas L. Morris, Jr., both natives of Washington, DC, diligently and admirably served the Nation for decades as employees of the United States Postal Service;
Whereas in the fall of 2001, during the course of their jobs with the United States Postal Service, Joseph Curseen, Jr., and Thomas Morris, Jr., were exposed to letters containing anthrax that were placed in the mail and subsequently suffered from the inhalation of anthrax and thereafter died;
Whereas 5 Americans died from exposure to anthrax during the 2001 anthrax attacks and 17 became ill in the worst biological attack in the Nation's history; and
Whereas in 2002, the United States Postal Service facility located at 900 Brentwood Road, NE, Washington, DC, was designated as the "Joseph Curseen, Jr. and Thomas Morris, Jr. Processing and Distribution Center" by Public Law 107--225: Now, therefore, be it
Resolved, That the House of Representatives honors the lives and work of Joseph Curseen, Jr., and Thomas Morris, Jr., the three other Americans who died and the 17 who became ill in the attacks, and acknowledges the sacrifice that all Postal Service employees make on behalf of the United States on a daily basis.