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George's Pharmacy opens its local store

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Young Beckett Gillmanis front and center as he andhis grandfather, George Gillman, use large scissors to cut a ribbon at Tuesday’s grand opening for the Connersville location of George’s Pharmacy. Beckett’s father, Blake Gillman, is standing behind him, and his uncle, Trent Gillman,is at left, next to Blake. The Fayette County Chamber of Commerce organized the ribbon cutting.
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Employees of George’s Pharmacy wore T-shirts advertising Taco Tuesday as they served free lunch to all who came to the store’s grand opening on Tuesday.

By BOB HANSEN - bhansen@newsexaminer.com

Forty-two years after George Gillman started working for a small drugstore in Brookville, he helped celebrate the opening of the 10th store bearing his first name.

A few hundred people joined him Tuesday, including the two sons that he credits with expanding the store from that original into the family’s small chain. And the next generation, young Beckett Gillman, helped cut the ribbon. 

George’s Pharmacy opened its Connersville location at 330 E. 5th St. with company staff serving up free food for Taco Tuesday. During a ribbon-cutting ceremony at noon, Fayette County Chamber of Commerce board chairwoman Krista Gibson and executive director Gertrud Whitaker and Mayor Harold Gordon welcomed the new store. 

Blake Gillman, who with his father George and brother Trent, own the stores, said the company, based now in Batesville, has 10 locations. Eight have pharmacies and two are medical equipment stores. His father started working at Riedman’s pharmacy in Brookville in 1977 and purchased it in 1985. They bought a second store, at Sunman, in 2007, and the rest have been added since.

Blake is a registered pharmacist, like his father, and oversees daily operations for the stores. On Tuesday, he was supervising a table where people could transfer their prescriptions from other stores. Brother Trent is in charge of the accounting and bookkeeping operations.

Blake Gillman acknowledged that the Connersville store had sat locked for several months, saying that construction was completed before state permits and licenses had been granted.

What sets George’s apart from other stores is one-stop shopping, Blake said. The store carries medical equipment such as oxygen and C-pap machines. It also has a wide selection of gift items.

George Gillman said that customer service is the key to the company’s growth. “We hang our hats on service and free delivery,” he said.

About 15 people work in the Connersville store, Blake said, including three pharmacists. The company employs about 130 people.