Frank's Barber Shop Closes After 31 Years

Frank Montemurro's untimely death in 2011 was a key factor.

Frank's Men's Hair Styling, one of the oldest barber shops in Haddonfield, which once boasted of an iconic Bruce Springsteen photo shoot in front of it, suddenly closed last week after 31 years of business.

A sign on the front door last week thanked customers as it announced the shop was closing "permanently."

The beginning of the end for Frank's was the untimely death of its owner Frank Montemurro, 56, in June of 2011. It was not reported then, but widely known and confirmed later by patrons and employees, that he died of suicide.

His wife, whose name is not immediately available, took over the shop and many of the barbers there, who said they were like family, vowed to stay on.

But a rift developed and five of the six barbers there left a year later and established their own shop, MirAno, just down Kings Highway from Frank's.

When barbers and customers alike in his Kings Highway shop, Frank's Men's Hair Styling, were distraught. He was the heart and soul of the barbershop that serviced everyone from toddlers getting their first haircuts to older guys coming to grips with balding pates.

“Our mentor was gone. Our friend was gone. Our hearts were broken,” says barber Joe Graziano of West Deptford, who helped establish MirAno, the last three letters of his name form the last three letters of the new shop's name.

There was no more joy in going to work every day as the banter among the barbers fell off, adds George Miraglia of Cherry Hill, who had worked for Montemurro 11 years, and partnered with Graziano for the new shop.

It was not immediately known why Frank's closed last week. Please check back for updates on this story.

Reporter Renee Winkler contributed to this report.

Chris Angelotti January 04, 2013 at 10:50 PM
The former employees who chose to make it out on thier own and could not have done so if it weren't for the opportunity presented to them, chose not to move on and honor Franks memory, but rather cause great hardship both financially and emotionally to Franks family. When they failed in their attempts to take the business from Franks wife, they felt that their only alternative was to spread lies and deceit in an attempt to poison the well of the Haddonfield business community. A despicable act driven solely by greed. Now that Frank's is no longer in business, they would like the good people of Haddonfield to believe that they are eternally grateful to Frank and that it was all just an unfortunate set of circumstances that led to the closing of the barber shop. Nothing can be farther then the truth. I can tell you with all honesty that Frank would feel truly betrayed. I would like to believe that its better this way in the end, but in a small town where relationships are built on honesty and integrity, everyone knows that thirty years of customer loyalty has to be earned and not achieved thru underhanded acts of selfishness and disrespect. I hope that people are able to see things for what they really are and remember Frank for his remarkable kindness and his generosity towards others. Frank loved Haddonfield and his customers and I know no matter what a few would have you believe, his memory will live on forever in the hearts and minds of all who loved him.
Joanne January 06, 2013 at 01:00 PM
Chris as we all know there are three sides to every story. Just as the barbers who left Frank's shop to start their own business, their story might be slanted as is yours being Frank's wife's brother. The truth lies somewhere in between.
Bob January 06, 2013 at 03:37 PM
Before it was Frank's it was Joseph's. I was a patron then and was one of Frank's first customers. He became a good friend. After his death it was very difficult to return. It was not the same. My sons and grandsons had their first haircuts by Frank. Without Frank it lost it's ifamily atmosphere and we all left. The barbers that left were also a part of the family. Their new shop is starting a new family showing much of Frank's influence. It is starting over and I wish them success.
Mike January 07, 2013 at 03:52 PM
I would gladly wait 2 hours for Frank, regardless of how many chairs came open. I easily passed the time enjoying the banter and camaraderie between everyone who worked there and their customers. Bob is right, it was a family atmosphere. Frank was a wonderful man who is sorely missed. I find the above comments extremely sad in that to this day, this poor man cannot rest in peace. It also reaffirms my decision to leave after Frank's passing was the right one.
lostinapothole January 10, 2013 at 03:40 AM
You are 100% correct in saying that Frank's memory will live on forever. I will never forget him until the day I see him in heaven. Then I'll get in line for a haircut, if I have any hair left to cut. I don't know the circumstances of the closing or the details of why the other guys went out on their own. I heard they offered to buy the business but there was no deal. Whatever. the important thing is that this little barber shop has left a lasting VERY positive legacy in Haddonfield. Frank is already missed and the buisness will be as well. Sad Day but also , if you look at it a different way, a day to celebrate 31 years of a community bought together by a small barber shop with an owner with a huge heart.


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