By Sydney Slotkin DuPriest
For the few people in Millington, Tennessee, who don’t know where Boatwright Pharmacy is, Leroy Boatwright (BSPH 49) can now give them directions using his own name.
A graduate of the Ole Miss School of Pharmacy, Leroy Boatwright, now 91, opened his pharmacy in 1957. Last month, the city honored his service by renaming the street where the pharmacy has stood for 60 years to “Leroy Boatwright Street.”
Friends of Boatwright’s from the Millington Senior Citizen Group secretly organized the campaign to rename the street. Meanwhile, his son Steven Boatwright (BSPH 88), his father’s successor at Boatwright Pharmacy, made sure his family would be in town for the renaming ceremony in mid-August. As part of the ceremony, the mayor of Millington, Terry Jones, and members of the Board of Aldermen, spoke about Boatwright’s impact on the community. They presented Boatwright with gifts, a key to the city and a proclamation declaring the street name changed.
“It was very special,” said Laura Smith (BSPH 80), Boatwright’s daughter. “My dad was overwhelmed and humbled by it all. He’s served several generations in his store, and the people of the community mean so much to him.”
All of Boatwright’s three children are pharmacists and graduates of the Ole Miss School of Pharmacy, including Emily Provence (BSPH 83). Provence and her husband Bradley (BSCHE 82) are both involved in Boatwright Pharmacy. Smith and her husband Brent (BSPH 75) co-own Chaney’s Pharmacy in Oxford.
“We grew up in his store, and I always knew that it was for me,” Laura Smith said. “He was the greatest influence on all his children in choosing this profession.”
Even though Boatwright is retired, he keeps his pharmacist’s license up-to-date and still comes into the store from time to time and speak with customers and help patients.
Leroy Boatwright said he was very surprised by the honor and grateful to his family, friends and the city.
“I really appreciate everything everyone did,” Boatwright said. “It’s been a good trip.”
For more information on the School of Pharmacy and this release, click HERE.