Dr. Sam Brewton, Jr. was presented the 2013 Service to Mankind Award by the Thomaston Sertoma Club last Thursday. Brewton’s family and friends, as well as past recipients of the award, were on hand to congratulate him.
Dr. Brewton was born in Florida, but his family came to Thomaston when he was a young man. He graduated from R. E. Lee Institute, Emory University, and the Medical College of Georgia. After serving his country in the U. S. Marine Corps, Dr. Brewton returned to Thomaston to open up a urology practice.
He married the former Martha Mullins, whose father. Dr. S. G. Mullins, was in a related field, as the owner and operator of City Drug Company. Dr. Brewton and his wife have three children, Martha Caroline Reddick, Sam Brewton, III, and Ben Brewton.
Dr. Brewton also served on the medical staff of what is now Upson Regional Medical Center, and even after retirement, sometimes assisted local physician Dr. Dan Bridges in the performance of surgical procedures.
But Dr. Brewton’s life in Thomaston was about more than just medicine. He served as a member of the Thomaston Board of Education from 1969 to 1978, including being board chairman. He was elected to the Thomaston City Council in 1977, serving until 1982. He was re-elected as Mayor Pro-Tem from 1990 to 1993, and was Mayor of Thomaston from 2000 to 2003. While he was in office, the development of industrial parks and the airport took place, the acquisition of the B. F. Goodrich property occurred, along with the renovation and transition of the R. E. Lee Institute into the governmental complex. Concerned about the appearance of Thomaston, Dr. Brewton was instrumental in the passage of the greenhouse ordinance that protects the green space on the city’s main thoroughfare, and the establishment of the Tree Board. He is also one of the original board members of the Flint River Keepers.
Dr. Brewton is a member of First Baptist Church, where he has served as deacon chairman and vice-chairman, is a charter trustee of the First Baptist Foundation, and served on the auditorium renovation committee. When the church celebrated its 150th anniversary in 1975, Dr. Brewton wrote a hymn for the occasion entitled “A Prayer for Continuity.”
Thomaston Sertoman Phil Hancock, who introduced Brewton, stated that Dr. Brewton learned early on that the buck stops here.
“So many people are reluctant to step forward, but he has done that his entire life,” said Hancock. “Because he has been there for multitudes of individual spanning so many years in so many ways, the Thomaston Sertoma Club is honored to present Dr. Sam Brewton, Jr. with our 2013 Service to Mankind Award.”
In accepting his award, Dr. Brewton said we all build on what our forebearers have started. He also thanked his wife, Martha, for taking on a lot herself so that he could do more.
“The best that we can hope for is that we have created stepping stones instead of stumbling blocks,” said Brewton, “and that what we did may have served some useful purpose.”