Fred Langston retires from Gilchrist Pharmacy

Fred Langston retired as a partner/pharmacist at Gilchrist Pharmacy Dec.31 after a 47-year career.

The St. Clair County native found his way to Hartselle in 1968 thanks to a classified ad published in a pharmaceutical magazine by Hartselle Hospital.

“The hospital was looking for a pharmacist, and I was working part-time at a hospital in Gadsden and attending college in Birmingham,” recalled Langston. “I made an appointment to interview with Orval Sparkman, and he hired me as the hospital’s first full-time pharmacist.”

“My wife and I were looking for a good place to raise our two boys at the time,” the U.S. Army veteran added. “Choosing Hartselle as our home was one of the best decisions we’ve made in our 50 years of marriage.”

Langston said he has no regrets about his long career in pharmacy.

“The upside is meeting the people and doing what you can to improve their quality of life,” he pointed out. “I worked in drug stores in other places, and I can truthfully say Hartselle folks are the nicest and friendliest you will find anywhere.”

Langston was affiliated with Gilchrist Pharmacy as a working partner for 38 years. He and Bob Smith, an original partner, changed the name of the business from Gilchrist-Burks to Gilchrist Pharmacy in 1977. Mike Pruitt became his partner in 2000.

Previously, Langston was a pharmacist at SuperX Drugs in Hartselle from 1970 to 1977.

Langston received a Bachelor of Science degree in chemistry and a pharmacy degree from Howard College (Samford University).

“Every day I went to work, I tired to make it a pleasant day,” Langston stated. “Showing a Christian attitude and love for other people is a plus no matter where you’re at or what you’re doing.”

Langston said he has no definite plans for retirement but is looking forward to setting his own schedule for each day.

Langston enjoys walking, gardening and watching his grandsons play ball.

Langston and wife Joan, a retired registered nurse, celebrated their golden wedding anniversary last November. They have two adult sons, Grant and David, and four grandchildren.

They are active members of Hartselle First United Methodist Church.

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