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St. Vincent post office swamped after Steeler's autograph vow

| Thursday, Aug. 7, 2014, 11:27 p.m.
Sean Stipp | Trib Total Media
Maria Schifano, assistant manager at the St. Vincent College post office, sorts mail headed for the Steelers on Tuesday, Aug. 5, 2014. Most of the packages are intended for wide receiver Antonio Brown.
Sean Stipp | Trib Total Media
Packages intended for Steelers wide receiver Antonio Brown await delivery at the St. Vincent College post office on Aug. 5, 2014.

Mail addressed to Steelers wide receiver Antonio Brown has been stacking up at St. Vincent College almost as fast as Brown has been racking up yards.

“That's definitely a football,” Maria Schifano, assistant manager at the post office on the Unity campus, said Tuesday of one oddly shaped envelope.

On July 28, Brown posted a photograph of himself, waving to fans, on Facebook with the message: “If I don't get a chance to sign something for you at camp just send info to me” at his room at St. Vincent.

Fans responded with 102,373 “likes.”

Then the mail started to deluge the school where the team has held summer training camp for 49 years.

After practice on Wednesday, Brown said that his room is “full to the top with mail.”

He promised to open every package and envelope.

“I'm loving it — all the positive energy from the mail. It's always touching when I can reach the fans,” Brown said.

In a later post, he thanked one for sending cookies.

Burt Lauten, communications coordinator with the Steelers, said the stacks of mail are tangible evidence of fans' loyalty.

“We always appreciate the support we get from our fans, not only at training camp, but also throughout the season, both at Heinz Field and on the road,” he said.

The post office usually handles “hundreds of pieces of mail” daily for 1,745 students, administrators, faculty members and the monastery.

Schifano said the volume of mail has been unusually high this August.

“I didn't expect it, but someone does something out of the ordinary, and we're here to handle it,” she said. “We get it in, and we get it out.”

“It was kind of surprising when I saw boxes and boxes just for Antonio Brown,” said Katie Nemchik, a sophomore from Trauger who works as one of two student assistants at the post office.

On Monday, Brown alone had at least 100 packages filling 11 bins, Schifano said.

“He's going to be busy,” she said.

Stacey Federoff is a staff writer for Trib Total Media. She can be reached at 724-836-6660 or sfederoff@tribweb.com.

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