From left, financial advisor Larry Craine, Mrs. Barbara Harter Rippy and Dean Philip Hall College of Pharmacy over the moon about Barbara Harter Rippy

By Roby Hill

There is only one measure that captures how much Barbara Harter Rippy cares for her community and everyone in it. To the moon and back.

Nearly 90 and still bright-eyed with vigor, Rippy makes a point of telling everyone she meets that she loves them to the moon and back. She loves gospel and country music, has a collection of drumsticks and guitar picks from concerts she’s been to see, is a big Elvis fan and counts country star Ronnie McDowell among her personal friends.

She has also ensured a prominent legacy for the Rippy name at the MUSC College of Pharmacy, which has named the Bobby Gene ’63 and Barbara Harter Rippy Lecture Hall in honor of her leadership support. In addition, she has provided transformational support by establishing a new endowed gift that is designed to fund the college’s first full-ride scholarship.

Planned giving played an instrumental role in fulfilling her philanthropic vision. Rippy has also generously made provisions in her estate plan through a bequest to support the Bobby Gene Rippy ’63 and Barbara Harter Rippy Endowed Scholarship Fund. This fund will provide support for Pharm.D. students from Union County, South Carolina. Her legacy gift is a lasting statement of the immense value she places on the excellence in education the MUSC College of Pharmacy provides.

Her guiding wisdom, her financial support and her indomitable will have made her an icon in her hometown of Union, South Carolina, where she is revered by the community.

She established the Barbara Rippy Children’s Supply House at the South Carolina School for the Deaf and the Blind Foundation. She provided the single largest individual gift in the history of the Lions Vision Service. She sponsored The Miracle League of Union County, which is a charitable organization that provides the opportunity for children and adults with intellectual and/or physical disabilities to play ball. She also sponsored All Star Park, an all-inclusive playground next to Miracle Ball Field.

Her penchant for improving lives has come to full fruition with her dedication to helping South Carolina’s pharmacy students and their future patients, while also honoring her late husband, Bobby Rippy.;

The MUSC College of Pharmacy is proud to call Bobby Rippy as one of its own. Bobby Gene Rippy graduated in 1963, thanks in part to Barbara Rippy continuing to work and support the family while he got his degree. The Rippys returned to Union, South Carolina, where they bought Smith’s Drug Store in 1969 and began fulfilling that heroic role of small-town businessperson and entrepreneur, the lifeblood of both business and community.

In addition to helping patients and making sure everyone got their medications, even when it meant giving them away, the Rippys became community leaders and benefactors, supporting civic and church organizations as well as sponsoring a Dixie Youth baseball team for 43 years.

Barbara Rippy continues to be an active member of her community, with memberships in 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.