The waiting is over - 789 Chrysler dealers got the word today that they are out of business. That is a quarter of Chrysler's 3,200 locations.
For those getting the axe, the news hit hard and fast. Chrysler wants them gone by next month. Instead of having separate Dodge and Jeep dealers, for example, one will stay and one will go. There is no compensation and no appeal.
The dealers we spoke with are angry. Many spent millions on glitzy showrooms and put their homes on the line to stay in business. Many expect now to face bankruptcy themselves , and they worry about their employees, and suppliers, who may also go under.
And there is more to come. GM plans to close 1,100 dealers by next year.
Most analysts think the auto giants will survive, but in a story we've heard repeatedly this recession, for countless businesses which depended on the status quo, this truly is the end of the road.