POINT PLEASANT, W.Va. — In November Fruth Pharmacy is celebrating 70 years in business with old-fashioned values and a motto “to do the right thing.”
Fruth Pharmacy has seen both good times and bad: from opening new stores to salvaging store remnants through fire and flood and facing the 2020 Covid-19 Pandemic head on. According to the company, 70 years in business has been a labor of love for the entire Fruth family.
Jack Fruth left a budding military career at Greenbriar Military Academy when he lost his sight due to measles and pneumonia. After an experimental procedure at the time, Fruth regained partial vision. No longer eligible to serve in the military, he embarked on a career as a pharmacist.
Losing his sight turned Fruth’s path in a new direction. He not only gained learning and experience at the Ohio State School of Pharmacy, but Jack also met Frances “Babs” who would become his wife. They buildt a life together in Point Pleasant, WV. They had five children: Mike, Joan, Carol, Lynne and John. All five of the Fruth children have actively taken part in the business since they can remember.
“When you were tall enough to reach the counter standing on a block, you were able to help by working the cash register,” recalled Joan Fruth, who currently serves as Special Projects Coordinator.
Jack Fruth was an active community member, helping to set up many other local businesses. He supported community projects and causes for the less fortunate. He addressed homelessness, set-up scholarships for college bound students and served his community diligently.
A celebration of business for Fruth Pharmacy is also a celebration of the life of Jack Fruth and his gifts to the local communities in which Fruth Pharmacy continues to serve.
“Fruth Pharmacy continues its active role in community projects today,” Lynne Fruth, president and chairman of the board explained. “Helping members of our community as we are able, stays a driving force for our business. We believe our success comes from the support our customers and employees give us. We simply do our best to return that support.”
Following in her father’s footsteps Lynne Fruth, now president of Fruth Pharmacy, has continued her father’s legacy. One of the special contributions she has brought forward is the Bridge of Hope Fund. The fund is set up to help those in addiction recovery set up a college education and find their way back into the workforce and community.
“Education was important to my parents. We wish to help those with educational goals achieve degrees for a successful future,” said Lynne Fruth who was a successful educator for West Virginia schools before taking over the reins at Fruth Pharmacy.
Lynne and her support team led the way through the COVID-19 Pandemic. Testing sites were set up and Lynne Fruth worked side by side with her team on the front lines. Cold, rainy, sometimes snow, did not hinder the job that lay ahead for Fruth Pharmacy. The team spent their days meeting with community members, helping to ease the minds of those finding the need to assess for Covid-19. During this unprecedented time, the community needed compassion and help. Lynne and her support team were there front and center. Lynne would not have had it any other way. Fruth Pharmacy was among the first to set up Covid-19 vaccination clinics. Serving the community is at the core of the Fruth family and they have never wavered.
Mike Fruth also shared memories, “Dad believed in helping others and doing what you love. I became a pharmacist myself, not because that is what he wanted, but it was something I had grown to love. He enjoyed helping others and serving the public. A pharmacist gets to interact with the patient in many ways. Many times, the pharmacist becomes the patient’s most valuable healthcare source of information.”
Now 29 stores strong in Ohio, West Virginia, and Kentucky, Lynne Fruth took a moment to reflect, “I don’t think dad had any idea when he started his first store on Jackson Avenue in Point Pleasant, that 70 years later our company would continue to serve the community in Point Pleasant as well as 28 other communities.”
Currently, in a time where many families and businesses are struggling due to the chaotic economy, Fruth Pharmacy clings to its core values. They continue to support local charities and show customers and employees appreciation by hosting events and giving away gifts and prizes. The company reward has been ten-fold as Fruth Pharmacy has been blessed for 70 years with loyal customers and employees. May the traditions of Jack Fruth continue forward, showing kindness and bringing communities together as one.
What do the next 70 years have in store for Fruth Pharmacy? Lynne Fruth answered, “We are going to continue to serve our communities. We will strive to hold up the ideals that my father proven in 1952: Treat customers and employees with respect, and always do the right thing.”