In Remington’s gun town, jobs are No. 1 concern

by Aaron Smith, CNN Money  |  published on April 11, 2013

For folks in Ilion, N.Y., guns equal jobs. More than 1,300 people from Ilion and neighboring Mohawk and Herkimer work at the sprawling Remington Arms factory.

Many residents bought their homes and raised their families on Remington paychecks.

Not even a local mass shooting on March 13, which left four people dead and a businessman and Remington retiree wounded, was enough to shake the area’s pro-gun sentiment.

“There’s nothing wrong with guns,” said John Seymour, who was shot twice in his barbershop in Mohawk, where the gunman also wounded a neighbor and killed two other men.

“This is an unfortunate situation that happened in a small town where they happen to make a lot of guns,” said Seymour, who was hit in the back and the wrist by gun shots. “It gives people the wrong idea that guns are bad.”

Seymour, who does not own a gun but whose father worked at the Remington plant for 37 years, was recovering at home in Ilion. His next-door neighbor, Remington retiree Dan Haslauer, was still in the hospital.

Gun sales have surged nationwide amid a series of mass shootings and increased efforts by Democratic leaders and President Obama to implement tougher restrictions on firearms.

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