Jim DeWitt doesn’t seem like one to brag, but he should since his pharmacy recently filled its one-millionth prescription.
Trinity Pharmacy is located in the town square across from the Ellis County Courthouse and Dewitt acknowledges this is an excellent location for many reasons.
“I am in a good location because the courthouse makes a good backdrop,” he said.
With a soda fountain to add to the old-town charm, stepping into Trinity Pharmacy reminds the customer of what a pharmacy should be - they even deliver “to nursing homes or to anyone, but just citywide,” Dewitt said.
Dewitt found the pharmacy when he got out of school.
“I went to work for Walgreens,” he said. “However, I wanted to work for myself and the store became available. Some friends from Hillsboro helped me find it so we came up here from Houston.”
It was in 1971 and Dewitt said he was lucky enough to get much of the nursing home business since he took Medicaid and the bigger chain in town, like Skillerns, did not. Skillerns eventually was bought out by Eckerd’s and Eckerd’s has since been bought out by CVS, but through it all, Trinity Pharmacy has remained standing.
After awhile, Dewitt said he joined the Rotary and church and a few other organizations, which also improved his business - and the rest, as they say, is history.
Trinity Pharmacy has been in operation since about 1913 and Dewitt even mentions a time when cars could pull up and wait for someone to come outside.
“They used to run out and wait on cars parked in the front and on the side like Sonic,” he said with a chuckle. “They would come and honk and someone would run out and take their order and take it back out to them on a tray.”
The pharmacy was remodeled in 1962, but it had a long history even before that. Dewitt said the name comes from the Trinity River and Trinity University, which was in Waxahachie prior to its moving to San Antonio.
“The little trains would stop outside the store and the students would come in and get drinks. It (the pharmacy) was another name then so they had so many students here they changed the name to Trinity Pharmacy way back in 1919 or around that time,” Dewitt said.
With such a quaint old-town feel it’s no wonder Trinity Pharmacy has been featured in quite a few movies during the years. Dewitt’s fondest memory is when “Return to Peyton Place” was filmed back in the 1980s.
The latest film he recalls was actually a commercial for Bell Helicopter.
“I was waiting on a grandpa and granddaughter and that is what it was mainly about,” he said.
With just two employees other than himself manning the business, Trinity Pharmacy takes all insurance cards and does quite a bit of work with Medicaid and Medicare.
Prescriptions might be a different business since he opened in 1971, but Dewitt said he is still dedicated to taking care of his customers the good old-fashioned way, just like his location and his one-of-a-kind soda fountain.