COMMUNITY GEMS: Longtime Dayton pharmacist makes customers’ lives easier

Dennis Fisher, 72, knows his customers at the CVS Pharmacy in the Westown Shopping Center by name.

When customers visit Dennis Fisher at the CVS Pharmacy, he already knows that they probably aren’t having a great day.

“When they come to me, they’re either sick, lost a close family member or they found out they have something they don’t know how to deal with,” said Fisher, who has been a registered pharmacist for 49 years.

So the 72-year-old does his best to make their day easier, engaging with customers, explaining how their medications will help and answering questions. He builds trust and a community.

He even knows his customers by name – and their spouse’s name, too.

“I always felt that people weren’t a number. They’re a human being,” Fisher said.

Linda McDole has experienced his attention to detail firsthand, as one of his customers for about the last two decades. She nominated Fisher as a Dayton Daily News Community Gem.

McDole, who lives on the west side of Dayton about a mile from the pharmacy, said most of the employees at the CVS location also are deserving of the honor. Fisher, however, has stood out for many reasons.

“Going into the pharmacy, you know you’re going to get what you need,” McDole said.

Fisher is committed to finding his customers the best outcome, and he truly wants to know how he can help, she said. He provided stability during the COVID-19 pandemic. He cares.

“I like that he takes the time,” she said.

She also praised Fisher for helping customers find the best prices for their prescriptions. For Fisher, that can mean figuring out how the customer can save a few bucks or why a medicine isn’t covered by insurance.

“If I can eliminate one little stress in their life, I feel like I’ve done my job as a pharmacist,” Fisher said.

Fisher grew up near Pittsburgh, where he decided he wanted a career that would help other people. The best way to do so, he decided, was pharmacy.

He not only helps by answering questions, but by asking his customers a few, too. In this way, Fisher can help his customers find solutions to their issues, or simply engage with someone who is sad or going through a rough time.

“A lot of times they just need somebody to talk to,” he said.

Fisher has lived in the Dayton area since 1974, after graduating from the University of Cincinnati. He retired two years ago when he turned 70 but still works two days a week at the CVS located at 4329 W. 3rd St., in the Westown Shopping Center near the Dayton VA Medical Center. Many customers have even followed him from other locations.

“I love this store, and I love the customers,” he said.

All customers should be able to ask their pharmacist any question, no matter how personal the topic, he said, and they should have confidence in the answer they receive. That is Fisher’s goal.

“It’s not about me,” Fisher said. “I’ve just tried to be there for the customer and to make their life a little bit easier.”

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