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February 4, 2013

Third Thomas Drug Store to open in Boston

THOMASVILLE —

The owner of two Thomas Drug Stores in Thomasville — and a third about to open in Boston — also owns the South Carolina pharmacy where he began working at age 14.

Vance Wall, owner of Advanced Medical Group, LLC, at Suwanee, doing business as Thomas Drug Stores and Langley Drug Co., bought Thomasville’s two Thomas Drug Stores in December 2011.

The projected opening date for the Boston Thomas Drug Store — and an adjacent clinic — is Monday.

Wall, a Duluth resident, was delivering newspapers as a boy in Langley, S.C., and performing janitorial work at a church, when the owner of the Langley pharmacy offered him a job.

Wall retained the church job and went to work at the pharmacy. He worked the soda fountain, cleaned floors and swept the parking lot. He later graduated from pharmacy school and purchased the Langley store.

The Boston store will be at 118 N. Main St., the site of a former pharmacy. The store will accept various insurance plans.

“We’re trying revive it,” Wall explained.

Harold Thomaston will be the pharmacist, with Renarda Jones as a pharmacy tech.

Dr. Jonathan Williams, a Thomasville physician and co-owner of the clinic, will see patients periodically. The physician’s training is in emergency medicine.

“We’re going to offer all medical services,” Williams said. Clinic personnel will be available for sports and school physicals, treatment of minor injuries and will offer all vaccines.  

Michael Forehand, a nurse practitioner, will be at the general-medicine facility full time. Treasure Payne, a physician assistant, will be part time.

The clinic will accept all types of insurance and use a sliding scale for payment by those who do not have insurance.

“We’re really excited about it,” Williams explained.

The full-service pharmacy and clinic will be open from 9 a.m. to 6 p.m. Monday through Thursday.

On Friday afternoons, Thomas Drug Stores in Thomasville will deliver to Boston customers.

Boston Mayor Danny Groover said the pharmacy and clinic will provide services in Boston for people who do not have transportation to Thomasville.

“It’s just going to be wonderful,” Groover said. “ ... It is something that is very much needed.”

Dr. Homer Pankey, retired Thomas University president, has been a catalyst behind the pharmacy and clinic locating in Boston.

“It seems like a natural marriage,” said Pankey, adding that clinic was scheduled to open. Wall soon entered the Boston scene, Pankey added.

The pharmacy and clinic have been renovated.

“Everything is spotless and perfect,” Pankey said.

In Thomasville, the Gordon Avenue Thomas Drug Store has undergone an “extreme makeover,” Wall said.

A restoration project will get under way at the downtown Thomas Drug Store, Georgia’s oldest drug store, including exposing more of the mosaic, blue-and-white tile floor.

Having grown up in a small town, Wall has an affection for such places.

“People know and help each other,” he explained.

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