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Gregory Laham, who found way to keep his Roslindale pharmacy thriving amidst onslaught of chains, dies at 73

Gregory Laham

Sullivan's Pharmacy on Corinth Street in Roslindale Square will be closed Monday morning so that employees can attend the burial of owner Gregory Laham, who transformed what had been a basic neighborhood drugstore into a supplier of specialized prescriptions and medical equipment able to stay open even as chains forced the shutdown of other independent pharmacies across the state.

Laham, a Westwood resident, died last week at 73.

A Boston Latin School graduate, Laham also went to the Massachusetts College of Pharmacy.

After buying Sullivan's in 1976, he worked with other Roslindale Square business owners and a young city councilor named Tom Menino to establish Boston's first Main Streets program to help the square out of a mire caused by the flight of businesses after the Dedham Mall went up.

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Comments

Mom and Pop pharmacies! Bonus for the lunch counter with swivel chrome stools!

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Voting closed 20

Is Richy's on River Street in Hyde Park, which used to be a drug store but which is now a breakfast/lunch place with round swivel stools at a counter.

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Voting closed 19

...but not near Boston. The Baker Pharmacy in Shelburne Falls still has an actual honest-to-god soda fountain. They make their own hot fudge, too.

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I am grateful for all he has done. Without Sullivan's, getting the medical equipment I have needed would be a burden. They make sure they have what they need so it is covered by insurance, they follow up & let you know how the process is going & they deliver it to your house. They will even set it up if you need it. I have always been treated with kindness there.
Big chains never offer this kind of service.
My condolences to his family & many friends.

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Voting closed 93

Thanks Adam for telling Gregory Laham's story. A good man his family, friends, and employees can be proud of.

A few years back, I used to get messages on my land line left to them by their customers. Since often times it seemed urgent or the customer seemed confused, I would call Sullivan's and let them know. Whoever answered there was always diligent in taking the message so they could call the customer. It was clear they took good care of their customers.

Hopefully Sullivan's will live on as Laham's legacy.

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Voting closed 58

Of the CVS in the Target where the Brooks Pharmacy that Menino blocked on behalf of Latham (since crony capitalism is okay in Boston) was supposed to go.

That said, Sullivan excels in medical equipment, delivers medicine, and my mum swore by them, which are reasons why they can beat CVS and needed no help against Brooks.

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Voting closed 24

Is anyone a fan of CVS as an actual pharmacy? Maybe for buying chips and OTC meds on sale, but prescriptions have always been a nightmare.

They’re always perpetually overworked and understaffed, so I expect a long wait for prescriptions, and a good chance of problems with the script or insurance that take more time to sort out after I show up.

I’m lucky to have an independent pharmacy that takes my insurance. I couldn’t believe how great they are: filling scripts in a few minutes while I wait, with no problems!

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Condolences to those who loved him.

As for the comments about how great Sullivan's is with medical equipment and caring about their customers, I wish I could agree. As a provider who has had to use Sullivan's for years to order medical equipment, my experience has been that they often sit on orders for months without working them. When we call them, they see the order and have no reason to give why the orders weren't worked. We've had to prepare and send new documentation for many patients because Sullivan's didn't work them and the insurance time frame to use the documentation passed. In some cases patients even had to come in for a new appointment because of it. This naked my job a lot harder, and makes for a horrible experience for our patients... Especially when the equipment is something like a nebulizer that is very necessary.

Of all the medical equipment providers I've had to deal with over the years, Sullivan's is easily top three worst.

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