Updated 03/15/2013 08:57 PM
Will John's Barber Shop ever be the same?
As that healing process begins in Herkimer County, some community cornerstones will be forever changed. Our Andrew Sorensen tells how the shooting at John's Barber Shop will affect far more people than those who were inside.
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MOHAWK, N.Y.-- A video from 2010 shows the inside of John's Barber Shop in Mohawk. In it, is John Seymour, with his loyal patrons, singing, as they have come to expect him to.
Longtime patron Steven Smith explained, "It's not just to get haircuts. It's to go and listen to stories, it's to listen to John sing."
"He does so much for the people down here, you just can't imagine how much John does," said Dick Bly, another customer.
But that changed Wednesday in a span of a few horrifying minutes. Smith is a friend of Seymour's and works across the street. Around 9:30, the ambulances started pulling up.
"A gentleman over there says that, 'It's John, it's John!' So I look through the window and I saw the whole gruesome scene," Smith said.
Police say Kurt Myers shot and killed Michael Ransear and Harry Montgomery and injured Dan Haslauer and John Seymour.
"The Lord was with John," said Bly.
A small memorial has since cropped up on the sidewalk, the windows remain covered. They lost two friends and an important village cornerstone.
"I've been going to that barber shop ever since I started working here 20 years ago and John is more than a friend to me," Smith said.
Ford Hamon said, "It would be the last place you'd expect anything to happen. It'll never be the same."
The musical barber shop tied them all together.
Ford Hamon gets his hair cut by John and he goes to the church John used to sing at. Another victim from the Gaffey's Fast Lube shooting played guitar with them. Dick Bly started with a haircut and ended up singing along, too.
"He's been a backbone of me getting back into music, he got me over here to the reform church," Bly said.
So it's a shock.
"We're just totally numb," said Smith.
But for their recovering friends, the rest of Seymour's patrons are optimistic.
"We're going to get back in and we're going to sing some music," said Bly.
Seymour's family says they don't know if they'll re-open the barber shop. They say he'll decide as he recovers.
Seymour underwent surgery for a wrist injured in the shooting. Haslauer was last listed in critical condition.