Frank and Jerry's to close in Steubenville
STEUBENVILLE, Ohio —
A Steubenville staple, Frank and Jerry's Furniture and Appliances, will close to the public sometime in the month of March.
“It's just time for us to move on, and to change, and that's what life is about," said owner, Jerry Barilla.
The business started by his father Frank back in the 1950's would eventually see Jerry at the helm.
“The top third floor was all bedroom, and mattresses and box springs. The second floor was living rooms, and tables and dinettes, and the first floor was televisions and appliances. So we did fill it all up. And of course, now it's reverted back to when we first came. It's all empty again,” he said.
Decades came and went, and so did thousands of customers.
When you own a business in a small town,
Jerry says it's all about the relationships you form.
“It's all about people. A building is just brick and mortar, it has no heart. It's the people that have the heart."
And while on a lunch break working for his father one afternoon,
there was one special person Jerry recalls meeting, his wife of now nearly 50 years, Judy.
“(I) Spotted her, and had an eye for her, and it happens that one of my classmates was working with Judy, and so I called Sonya over one day and I said 'You think I could ask this Judy out for maybe a date?'"
With so many memories and relationships formed over the years, Jerry is moving on.
When asked about being at the shop, he said, “My life is what I do downtown. I love downtown. It's something that will always be a part of me."
So what's next? Jerry says he will continue his work at Historic Fort Steuben, and run for mayor.
“To me, Steubenville is my life. We don't have any children, so whatever I’ve gotten into, I pretty much go into it full force, and Steubenville is who I am," he added. He also wanted to give thanks to all of those who have worked at the store over the years.