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Local business celebrates 60 years of service

LYNDY BERRYHILL / Bane Drugs, located next to Piggly Wiggly on Monticello Street, is celebrating 60 years in business this year.

LYNDY BERRYHILL / Bane Drugs, located next to Piggly Wiggly on Monticello Street, is celebrating 60 years in business this year.

In 1954, Clinton Bane and his wife, Doris Allred Bane, started a small drugstore in downtown Brookhaven between Trustmark Bank and what is now Southern AgCredit on Whitworth Avenue. Sixty years and three locations later, the business is still going strong.

At the original location on Whitworth, the drugstore was equipped with the quintessential soda fountain that made Bane Drugs a popular stop in downtown for milkshakes and cheeseburgers.

Bane Drugs is also the longest running sponsor of Dixie Youth Baseball and was one of the four original businesses to start the league.

PHOTO SUBMITTED / A crowd is gathered in front of Bane Drugs grand opening at the business’s original location on Whitworth Avenue in 1954.

PHOTO SUBMITTED / A crowd is gathered in front of Bane Drugs grand opening at the business’s original location on Whitworth Avenue in 1954.

The store currently is situated next to Piggly Wiggly grocery store on Monticello Street and is owned and operated by four of Clinton and Doris Bane’s children: Beverly Bane Case, Mary Bane, Bunny Bane Lea and Allen Bane.

The Bane children have taken care to preserve the business’s history with a large scrapbook containing pictures of the store’s milestones as well as candid photographs of Bane’s employees and favorite customers over the business’ six decades of operation.

The scrapbook includes original photographs of the grand opening in 1954, when the store moved to Westbrook Shopping Center, as well as the other two location openings throughout the decades.

Beverly Bane Case, registered pharmacist, said, “Some of our older customers still recognize themselves in the old pictures when they stop by.”

One of the most memorable employees of Bane Drugs was the late Bishop Richardson who delivered for the business from 1956 well into the 1970s.

Case recalled fondly, “He couldn’t read or write, but he knew exactly where to go and exactly how to do it when he delivered.”

Richardson was loved by customers and had a great relationship with Clinton Bane throughout the years he was employed.

In the store, on a shelf, is a three-gallon glass bottle of medicine with Richardson’s name and address that reads, “‘Take 1 teaspoon for the rest of your life.'”

Richardson’s grandchildren, as well as his nieces and nephews, still come to shop and pick up their medicine at Bane Drugs occasionally.

Case stated, “I can remember at the end of a long day having only two or four, maybe six people coming in. Who knew it would last 60 years?”

PHOTO SUBMITTED / The late Bishop Richardson delivered for Bane Drugs for over 20 years.

PHOTO SUBMITTED / The late Bishop Richardson delivered for Bane Drugs for over 20 years.

When asked about the secret to staying in business for so long, Bunny Bane Lea attributes the business’s success to loyal customers and, above all, prayer.

“God has been so good to us,” Lea said of their business experience in Brookhaven.

Lea stressed the values her father brought up their family and business to respect.

“He truly appreciated and loved his customers and that is how he raised his children,” said Lea.

Bane Drugs continues to operate under Clinton Bane’s philosophy of always putting the customer first and considers it an important attribute to the business in this day and age.

The store is open Monday through Friday from 8 a.m. to 6 p.m. and Saturday from 7 a.m. to 1 p.m.