Marvin Teel died Saturday at 90. He delivered the Benton Evening News in Illinois via bicycle until two weeks ago, when he went to the emergency room — after he finished his three-mile route. “So even the day he went into the hospital, he delivered,” Teel’s daughter Sherry Bullock told The Southern Illinoisan’s Becky Malkovich.
Before he delivered the Evening News, Teel was a rural mail carrier for 45 years, Malkovich writes. In a story last year, Teel said he was “in contention” for the title World’s Oldest Paperboy:
That title is thought to be held by a 93-year-old man in Winters, Calif., but Teel thinks he’s got the rival carrier beat.
“He works for a weekly newspaper so he only delivers once a week. I deliver five days a week,” Teel said.
Teel also “took great pleasure in frequently writing letters to the editor of many newspapers,” Mona Sandefur writes in The Benton Evening News. “He was articulate at framing the conservative world views on various issues of the day.” Teel played bass guitar and “installed a TV antenna at the church and a 7-8 foot lighted cross on top of the antenna when he was 80,” John Gulley, a fellow parishioner at Greenwood United Methodist Church in Mulkeytown, Illinois, told Sandefur.
Teel “had a real work ethic,” Bullock said. “He believed if you said you were going to do something, you did it.”