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VIProfile: Rick Sain

Born and raised in Bedford County, Rick Sain grew up on a farm in Bell Buckle. There he learned a strong work ethic as he helped his family raise beef cattle, soybeans, wheat and corn. He always thought he was going to be a farmer. That is until his senior year in high school. That is the year he began working at the local Revco Drug Store. 

“I loved seeing how the pharmacists interacted with their patients,” said Sain. “That is where my pharmacy journey began.”

He completed his undergraduate work at Middle Tennessee State University and his Doctor of Pharmacy at University of Tennessee College of Pharmacy in Memphis. His final year of pharmacy school, he did an internship at what was then Reeves-Powell Drug Store located on Church Street. 

“Ron Powell and Richard Reeves offered me a job when I graduate,” added Sain. “I commuted from Shelbyville until I married Amy, my high school sweetheart, in 1990. We then bought a house here in Murfreesboro and have been here ever since.”

After working for Reeves Powell Drug Store for five years, Sain was able to buy Ron Powell out. When Shane Reeves graduated from the University of Tennessee College of Pharmacy in 1994, he bought his father out. That was when it became Reeves Sain Drug Store.

When Rick Sain and Shane Reeves sold the company to Fred’s Pharmacy in 2015, they were told the new company was going to keep everything the same. But, then Fred’s went out business. It was just as devastating to Sain as it was to his former patients and employees. He and Shane Reeves had worked hard to grow the business, while surviving the massive changes that took place in the pharmacy business over the 28 years they ran the company.

For the first two years of the Fred’s ownership, Sain worked for them as part of the deal, but he eventually left as things began to change. In 2018, Fred’s was sold off to Xpress Pharmacy, which had a different idea of what to do with Reeves-Sain. Then the bankruptcy raged in the courts for more than a year and a half. In the end, Sain had gained back the property and the name. 

“Of course,” explained Sain, “I had to get Shane’s approval to bring the name back, as he is no longer an owner of the business. There will be no crossover with Shane Reeve’s business, Twelve Stone.”

Sain had hoped to re-open the business in the fall of 2022 and then January 2023, however there were many building and business issues that were slowed by the pandemic and its aftermath shortages. 

“There have been set backs because of supply chain issues that can’t be helped,” said Sain. “We have totally re-done the building and updated all of the equipment.

Stepping inside the revamped building feels familiar and yet it is totally updated. White subway tile gleams all around the Soda Shoppe. All of the tables are filled with families enjoying the sense of being back in the “neighborhood” hangout. The line awaiting shakes is never ending. 
Sain has brought in Laura Gossett of Tasty Table to run the Soda Shoppe and Susan Grear of The Write Impression is back in charge of the gift shop. She ran the gift shop when the store was on Church Street and when it first moved to Memorial. 

“Having Tasty Table and The Write Impression doing the food and gifts allows us to focus more on the pharmacy and healthcare of patients,” noted Sain. “Immunizations and travel vaccines are going to continue to be a big part of what we continue to do. In fact, we built out a new patient room just for that. Our free delivery to all of Rutherford County is already been a big plus for many patients who cannot get out. The Post Office is still in the works, but coming soon.”

While the business was closed, many of their former customers followed pharmacist Taylor Black, who began working at Reeves-Sain in high school, when he opened Black’s Apothecary. He has joined forces with Sain and Mark Moore who will be doing their compounding work. 

“These are two great guys that I know the community will love,” explained Sain. “Taylor was already doing well with his pharmacy and we are truly excited that he has agreed to merge his pharmacy back in with Reeves-Sain. My son, Alec, who is a pharmacist as well, is doing more of the clinical parts of pharmacy with us and has truly been an asset through this whole restart. I have also brought back Retail Sales Manager Kathy Bennett who will oversee pharmacy sales.” 

Not only is Sain committed to his customers, but he is also committed to the community. He has served on many boards including Dispensary of Hope, Middle Tennessee Medical Center, Rutherford County Chamber of Commerce and Murfreesboro Rotary Breakfast Club. He currently serves on the boards of Discovery Center at Murfree Springs and Community Foundation of Rutherford County. He and his family – Amy and sons Alec and Ky --  are members of Fellowship United Methodist Church.  

“We are very blessed in this community,” added Sain. “And, I am excited to be able to serve the community’s health needs once again, as well as bring back a favorite community meeting place that I hope will create many more happy memories.” 

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