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Chamberlain's Casey Drug & Jewelry sold to Lewis Drug

CHAMBERLAIN -- A Chamberlain institution will change hands Jan. 1. Terry and Sharon Casey, owners of Casey Drug & Jewelry, announced Friday the sale of their 90- year-old business to Lewis Drug.

"It just happened this morning and we wanted everybody to know," Terry said by phone late Friday. It was a tough decision, he said.

The store has been in the family for three generations. Details of the transition are still being finalized.

"We've got a lot of work to do yet before the switchover and then we'll decide what to do," he said. "I may stay on for a little bit after the sale, but first we're going to take some time off."

The business was founded in 1922 by J.F. Casey, Terry's grandfather. In 1970, Terry purchased the original 2,200 square-foot store at 201 N. Main St. from his uncle Mark, and in 1978 he opened Casey Drug & Jewelry and Café, an 8,000 square-foot second location off Interstate 90, which featured numerous gift items and home-cooked food. The Caseys' son Christian managed the café.

Sharon Casey said she and her husband were approached by Lewis Drug a year and a half ago about purchasing the businesses, but the time wasn't right. Negotiations resumed earlier this year, she said.

In a Friday news release, she wrote, "We have responded over recent years to the questions about our retirement plans with the simple answer: we will know when we have found the best home for our beloved family of employees. We think this is the right one."

She said selling the businesses will allow them to enjoy their retirement and to spend more time with family and friends.