No one likes being sick. When your health does fail you, it’s nice to have a pharmacy that is there for you and at Buckeye Drugs that is the goal of owner/pharmacist, Dr. Cory McDonald. He knows that a little compassion and a lot of commitment is what it takes to serve the community of Wilson County and this passion has driven him for more than 25 years.
Celebrating their 50th anniversary in 2023, Buckeye Drugs opened on April 27, 1973, and has remained in the same location at 315 North Cumberland Street since. Cory credits the shop’s continued success to the numerous generational customers who continue coming back. This unwavering loyalty to Buckeye Drugs, coupled with new customers has truly blessed Buckeye Drugs more than the McDonald’s could ever imagine.
Cory’s family roots of service run deep in middle Tennessee, growing up down the road in Smith County with his father, Dr. David McDonald, a beloved dentist in Carthage for 33 years, and here in Lebanon with his mother, Lisa Tuggle, a beloved special education teacher in Wilson County for 27 years. He also says his grandmother Lois is the greatest person he has ever known, and watching them all have such an impact on peoples’ lives inspired him to try and do the same.
Ultimately, it was his uncle, Dr. Steve Wilmore, the owner of Smith County Drug Center in Carthage, who gave him the direction he was looking for when he began working for him as a junior in high school. Cory says that’s where he learned firsthand what it takes to serve others well in a small town, things he would later implement at Buckeye Drugs.
Going on to college at the University of Tennessee, he recalls meeting a beautiful Wilson County girl named Megan who became his wife in 2006, moving to Atlanta as Cory attended pharmacy school at Mercer University College of Pharmacy, before heading back to middle TN as a pharmacist at Rite Aid.
One cold day in 2012, Cory was in Lebanon having his car serviced and took the opportunity to connect with Dr. John Turner, the former owner of Buckeye, becoming a fill-in pharmacist until the doors opened for him to purchase Buckeye Drugs in 2018.
Cory says he gained a wealth of knowledge from Dr. Turner and he still calls Dr. Turner Boss Man to this day. Cory and Megan decided to relocate their family here in Lebanon in August of 2022 and says the community has welcomed his family with open arms, which they are extremely grateful for.
Buckeye Drugs has won best pharmacy in Wilson County several years and in 2022 was a top three finalist for the best pharmacy in Middle Tennessee. Some of the services they provide are free delivery, medication packaging, diabetic counseling, and an array of vaccinations with no appointments needed. When you add in durable medical equipment for both rental and purchase it makes Buckeye Drugs a one stop shop when your health is not at its peak.
While Cory manages the pharmacy, Megan keeps the gift shop boutique filled with unique items such as baby gifts, bereavement items, Swan Creek Candles, and curated seasonal decor. The family takes pride in hiring competent and friendly staff to ensure you are greeted and served from the first step through the doors.
Cory says perhaps the most important part of the success of Buckeye Drugs is how it has allowed them to give back to the community of Wilson County. He says, John 13:35 reads, By this shall all men know that ye are my disciples, if ye have love one to another; Jesus taught us to have compassion for everyone and this is what drives Cory daily. Buckeye Drugs proudly supports Sherry’s Run, Compassionate Hands, Empower Me along with many other organizations and sports teams. As both his father and his uncle taught him from an early age, you take care of the community and the community will take care of you.
Be on the lookout for a ground-breaking ceremony to begin the building of a new, modern, state of the art pharmacy, but don’t worry, you won’t have to travel far to the new location as they have purchased an adjacent lot and are making preparations for building a new, more convenient Buckeye Drugs, offering more space, a larger gift shop, and most importantly a new drive-through window. They hope to complete this project over the next year.
You take care of the community and the community will take care of you.