‘An extraordinary lady’ honored


Rippy honored during Founders’ Day at USC Union

By Charles Warner - cwarner@civitasmedia.com



Charles Warner | The Union Daily Times Barbara Rippy stands by the portrait presented her by the Union/Laurens Commission for Higher Education in honor of her support of USC Union. The portrait was presented to Rippy Friday morning during USC Union’s 20th Annual Founders’ Day and 50th Anniversary celebration. Rippy’s portrait will hang in the USC Union Community Room alongside the portraits of other Founders’ Day honorees.


By Charles Warner

cwarner@civitasmedia.com

UNION — The portrait of “an extraordinary lady” will soon be placed alongside the portraits of the other extraordinary individuals honored for their support of and contributions to USC Union.

This year is the 50th anniversary of the founding of USC Union and that anniversary along with its 20th annual Founders’ Day was celebrated Friday morning with a special program in the campus auditorium followed by a reception in the lobby of the Main Building.

Founders’ Day honors those individuals who have supported USC Union and its mission of providing the people of Union County with higher learning opportunities. As part of the Founders’ Day celebration, the Union/Laurens Commission on Higher Education commissions a portrait of each honoree. The portrait is presented during the Founders’ Day ceremony and then placed alongside the portraits of other honorees in the Community Room of the Central Building on the USC Union campus.

In his opening remarks at Friday’s ceremony, Col. C. Richard Denton, Chairman of the Union/Laurens Commission on Higher Education, said that Founders’ Day “honors an individual who has made a significant contribution to the future and continuance of USC Union.”

This year’s honoree is Barbara Rippy who is being honored for her love for and generosity to not only USC Union, but the Union County community as a whole. Rippy’s support of USC Union and the greater Union County community includes:

• A $25,000 donation for the new USC Union Student Center.

• A $25,000 donation for the new USC Union Bookstore.

• A $100,000 pledge for the Student Center Courtyard which will be named in memory of her husband, the late Bobby Rippy.

• Working 25 hours or more a week serving the community

• Membership in the Union County Lions Club, Union County Civitan Club, Union County Arts Council, Union County Relay for Life, Union County Historical Society, and Grace United Methodist Church where she is a member of the Young at Heart group and the church’s Relay for Life team.

In addition to the portrait, which is unveiled during the ceremony, a plaque is also presented to the honoree in recognition of their contributions to USC Union. Rippy’s plaque was presented to her by Brenda C. Childers, Secretary/Treasurer for the Union/Laurens Commission on Higher Education.

Prior to the presentation of the plaque, Deborah H. Littlejohn, Vice Chairman of the Union/Laurens Commission on Higher Education, spoke about Rippy, describing her as “an extraordinary lady” who “has always been a cheerleader and champion for Union County in every endeavor she has pursued.”

Littlejohn also spoke about how Rippy as a child walked to church by herself because her parents did not take her. She also spoke about how when Rippy’s husband, Bobby, went to school to become a pharmacist, Rippy supported the family so her husband could get his education.

“Even back then, Barbara was a hard worker,” Littlejohn said. “She provided for Bobby to reach his goal of being a pharmacist. She’s always been one determined lady.”

After her husband became a pharmacist, the couple moved to Union in 1969 and became the owners and operators of Smith’s Drug Store on Main Street until their retirement 34 years later.

Their proprietorship of their drug store and how they treated those who needed their help was the subject of another story Littlejohn told Friday.

At the age of 19 in July of 1996, Littlejohn said her son, Patrick, became very sick and was diagnosed as having T-Cell Leukemia and was hospitalized. She said that the treatment he underwent caused him to experience severe nausea requiring him to be administered an anti-nausea drug. Patrick was in the hospital for three weeks and then was allowed to go home but would return to the hospital each week for two years while undergoing a chemotherapy regimen.

Littlejohn said her son was prescribed an anti-nausea drug called Zofran, which had only recently come out on the market, so recently that most drugstores would not order it because it was so expensive.

“Someone suggested for us to go to an independent pharmacy, so we went to Smith’s Drug Store and talked to Dr. and Mrs. Rippy about ordering it for Patrick,” Littlejohn said. “They told us they they would order it for us but it would be about $350 for 15 tablets.

“I will never forget what Mrs. Barbara said that day,” she said. “She told me, ‘Don’t worry what that drug costs, we’ll get it for you, sweetheart. Your child needs it and you can pay us whenever you can. We trust you and we’ll do anything we can to help you.’”

Littlejohn said she and her family began doing business with Smith’s Drug Store that year and continued to so until the Rippys closed it.

“Now that’s the kind of people the Rippys were in 1996 and how Barbara is today,” Littlejohn said. “She is a caring, kind, and generous lady of the highest moral character. I will never forget what she did for us and how she and Dr. Rippy had hearts of gold.”

As for her son, Littlejohn said that he is now 39 and the father of “a precious little boy and girl.”

Littlejohn concluded by thanking Rippy for what she did for her family and what she has done and continues to do for both USC Union and Union County.

“So, Barbara Rippy, the Littlejohns love you dearly and are forever grateful to you for what you did for our son and you continue to do for USC Union and this community.”

Charles Warner can be reached at 864-762-4090 or cwarner@civitasmedia.com.

Charles Warner | The Union Daily Times Barbara Rippy stands by the portrait presented her by the Union/Laurens Commission for Higher Education in honor of her support of USC Union. The portrait was presented to Rippy Friday morning during USC Union’s 20th Annual Founders’ Day and 50th Anniversary celebration. Rippy’s portrait will hang in the USC Union Community Room alongside the portraits of other Founders’ Day honorees.
http://uniondailytimes.com/wp-content/uploads/2015/10/web1_IMG_0027.jpgCharles Warner | The Union Daily Times Barbara Rippy stands by the portrait presented her by the Union/Laurens Commission for Higher Education in honor of her support of USC Union. The portrait was presented to Rippy Friday morning during USC Union’s 20th Annual Founders’ Day and 50th Anniversary celebration. Rippy’s portrait will hang in the USC Union Community Room alongside the portraits of other Founders’ Day honorees.
Rippy honored during Founders’ Day at USC Union

By Charles Warner

cwarner@civitasmedia.com

Charles Warner can be reached at 864-762-4090 or cwarner@civitasmedia.com.

Charles Warner can be reached at 864-762-4090 or cwarner@civitasmedia.com.

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