Solemn anniversary of mass shooting marked in Herkimer

By WKTV News

(WKTV) - On March 13, 2013, tragedy struck in Herkimer County.

That was the day four men were killed and two others were shot. An area in the Village of Herkimer was shut down for hours before the gunman was killed.

On Thursday morning, a moment of silence was held at 9:29 a.m.

Harry Montgomery, Michael Ransear, Thomas Stefka and Michael Renshaw were killed by Kurt Myers. Two others, Dan Haslauer and John Seymour were wounded and had a long road to recovery.

One survivor, John "The Barber" Seymour, says he's a very different person today. After a long recovery, he's back on the job, but now his shop is in his garage at home.

He was cutting hair in his Mohawk barber shop one year ago today when Kurt Myers came and said something along the lines of, "Remember Me? Well, you're going to," and shot him twice.

Seymour thought he was going to die. But surviving two gunshot wounds when a patron in his shop, Harry Montgomery, died in the shooting, hasn't just given Seymour a greater appreciation for the little things -- it's give him a greater appreciation for everything.

"You appreciate your life more and people more, for sure," Seymour said. "You appreciate everything that happens.

"You can have something bad -- like I had to have root canal work done -- but hey, I'm alive to have it done."

Seymour says fellow survivor Dan Haslauer is also doing well and recovering. He spent the exact moment of the shooting Thursday having a moment of silence, and, like so many others in Herkimer, praying for the victims who didn't make it.

In a small town and village such as Mohawk and Herkimer, Herkimer Police Chief Joseph Malone and everyone involved passes the places the tragedies happened daily, so they're always right there. Chief Malone thinks that day changed everyone.

"It's not the same as it was, because we all, I think, lived in a bubble that 'things like that don't happen here,' " Malone said. "I liken it to the United States -- 9-11 woke us up, and 3-13 woke the valley up."

Police killed Kurt Myers in a fiery shootout at the former Glory Days, leaving those whose lives were changed forever to guess as to Myers' reasons why.

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