Barber, 79, dies after attack in shop

April 8, 2011 11:37:17 AM PDT
A search is underway for the men who brutally beat a 79 year old barber and then left him face down and unresponsive in his barbershop in New Jersey.

The victim died on Tuesday, four days after the attack.

Frank Halat suffered from lung disease and used oxygen to breathe, but that didn't stop the war veteran from coming to work at his barber shop 5 days a week, ten hours a day.

Halat's barber shop is located on Main Street in the small town of Bloomingdale.

"He just liked to keep busy. As long as he could doing what he liked, he was going to keep doing it," Alexandria Henry, his daughter-in-law, said.

Frank the Barber, as everyone knows him, was attacked in his store sometime between eight and eleven Friday morning. A customer walked in for a haircut and found Halat lying unconscious with severe injuries to his head and face.

Flowers from well-wishers cover the barber shop door on Monday, and one card reads, 'You're one of the reasons I love this small town.'

Halat's 11-dollar haircuts are legendary. He is known as a kind man, devoted to his wife, five children, and ten grandchildren.

Bloomingdale Police have been giving out a flyer to try to generate tips that could help them break the case.

"Something insignificant at the time could wind up breaking the case," Bloomingdale Police Chief Joseph Borell said.

Police are looking at robbery as a possible motive.

Halat's family and friends told Eyewitness News that the cash register was left untouched, but they believe a roll of cash he kept in his pocket was stolen.

Halat never regained consciousness after the attack.

Dontations for the reward fund may be mailed to:

The Frank Halat Memorial Reward Fund
in care of Lakeland Bank
28 Main Street
Bloomingdale, NJ

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