By DUSTIN RACIOPPI
Ballew Jewelers, a Red Bank staple since 1886, when it began as Reussille Jewelers, is pulling out of town, leaving a gaping hole, both symbolic and tangible, in a downtown struggling to tread water in a difficult economy.
News of the closing hit some of the nearby merchants like a sucker punch.
“It’s horrible. Horrible,” said Zebu Forno owner Andrew Gennusa. “For a business that’s more than a hundred years old to close here, it’s like a death.”