BEC Fills the Need of Bandera Pharmacy

Photo by Lindsey Bertrand. Back row from left: Zack Devrow and Corey Cottrell, Alpha Technologies Services installers; Bandera Drug team members Terry Patrick, Niki Collins, Cassandra Freitag and Brian Williams; and Allen Marshall, BEC Fiber OSP supervisor. Front row from left: Chuck Vollbaum, Alpha Technologies Services installer; Misty Wilson and Elisa Emerson, Bandera Drug team members; Wayne Antenen, Bandera Drug pharmacist; Dusty Trimuar and Ronnie Stone, BEC Fiber OSP engineers; and Garrett Mitchell, BEC Fiber broadband deployment coordinator.

When the Bandera Drug pharmacy unexpectedly lost internet service for the third time in two years, owner and pharmacist Wayne Antenen was at the end of his rope. The outage occurred January 2, and it couldn’t have come at a worse time.

“The day after a holiday means more work for pharmacies because we have a little bit of a backlog,” said Antenen.

That morning, he and his staff filled a mere 11 prescriptions before they lost internet, cell and phone service with AT&T due to damaged lines near Pipe Creek. Without the internet, they couldn’t fill any prescriptions, and without phone service, they couldn’t call their customers. They were essentially dead in
the water.

“We couldn’t even call the neighboring businesses to confirm the outage,” he said.
By 3:30 p.m., the phone service was restored, so Antenen and his team began calling their customers to make arrangements for short-term refills.

By Friday, January 3, Bandera Drug still didn’t have internet connectivity. Antenen called AT&T from his home, and they ran through basic troubleshooting steps with him. AT&T proposed that Bandera Drug’s modem was at fault, and they offered to send a technician a week and a half later.

His customers’ health and wellness couldn’t wait that long, so Antenen called BEC Fiber. He spoke with BEC Fiber Sales Representative Elise Sharum, asking if there was anything BEC could do to get the pharmacy back online that day. Sharum immediately called the BEC Fiber team while Antenen drove to the pharmacy.
BEC Fiber began making a plan and mobilizing their technicians and installers. Once at the pharmacy, Antenen spoke with AT&T representatives for more than two hours with no resolution.

“I told them, ‘You don’t get it, and you don’t care,’” said Antenen. Meanwhile, BEC Fiber’s technicians had arrived and were ready to help.

When Antenen hung up with AT&T, BEC Fiber technician Ronnie Stone asked, “Would you like to go ahead with the BEC Fiber installation?” Antenen wholeheartedly agreed, and together the technicians and installers got Bandera Drug back online at 1:30 p.m. that afternoon. From 2-6 p.m. that day, Antenen and his team filled 300 prescriptions.

“You all are superheroes,” said Antenen. “BEC Fiber was here for us and our customers in our time of need, and the community needs to know you care.”

He also commended the community for their response in a stressful situation. “We fortunately have great people in this community who were very understanding. They are why we do what we do,” he said.
Posted Thursday, February 20, 2020