Upstate NY barber who survived rampage played dead - FOX13 News, WHBQ FOX 13

Upstate NY barber who survived rampage played dead

Posted: Updated:
A memorial sits on a vehicle outside John's Barber Shop on, March 14, 2013, in Mohawk, N.Y. (AP Photo/Mike Groll) A memorial sits on a vehicle outside John's Barber Shop on, March 14, 2013, in Mohawk, N.Y. (AP Photo/Mike Groll)

MICHAEL HILL | AP

ALBANY, N.Y. (AP) — The barber who survived last month's fatal shooting rampage in neighboring central New York villages said Wednesday he played dead while the gunman shot up his shop, even as one of the victims fell on him.

John Seymour recounted how Kurt Myers walked into his barbershop in Mohawk on March 13 just as he was pulling the cloth from a customer in the barber chair. Myers asked Seymour if he remembered him, pulled up his shotgun — Seymour had thought it was an umbrella — and began firing.

"It just kind of spooks me out that he would say, 'Do you remember me ...'  And he had a smirk on his face almost like he wanted me to know that he was the one who was going to do me in," Seymour, 66,  said in a phone interview from his home in Ilion.

Seymour yelled: "This is really a gun! He's going to kill us all!" as Myers started shooting Seymour and three of his customers. Seymour and Dan Haslauer survived, but Michael Ransear and Harry Montgomery Sr. were killed. Myers then drove to neighboring Herkimer, where he fatally shot two men inside Gaffey's Fast Lube.

Myers died in a shootout with police the next morning inside an abandoned Herkimer bar.

Seymour counted about nine shots in his shop and even recalls the song on the radio: the 1978 Joe Walsh hit "Life's Been Good." Seymour stayed still on the floor even as Montgomery fell on him. He had remembered an interview with a girl on TV who survived a family shooting by playing dead.

"I knew he shot everybody, but my worst fear was that maybe he was going to stand there and wait to see if anybody moved so he could shoot us again," he said.

Police were still trying to figure out a motive for the shootings. Seymour said he cut Myers' hair years ago and knew him only passingly as a "nervous-type guy" that you wouldn't want to hang around with.

Seymour, who initially spoke to the Utica Observer-Dispatch, is recovering at home with wounds to his left wrist and back. Though his scissoring wrist is still healing, he wants to get back to being a barber.

Not at his old shop, though.

"I don't think I'm going to back there, no," he said. "Too many memories."

Copyright 2013 The Associated Press.

  • New York State NewsNew York State NewsMore>>

  • Wedding reception at country club ends with brawl

    Wedding reception at country club ends with brawl

    Tuesday, September 16 2014 8:37 AM EDT2014-09-16 12:37:23 GMT
    New York State NewsNew York State News
    Police say they're investigating a large brawl that broke out at the end of a wedding reception held over the weekend at a suburban Buffalo country club. Officials tell local media that seven different police agencies were called in late Saturday to break up the fight at the Orchard Park Country Club. Officers say dozens of the approximately 200 guests were involved in the melee, which broke out after a member of the wedding party was tossed off the premises for inappropriate behavior.
    Police say they're investigating a large brawl that broke out at the end of a wedding reception held over the weekend at a suburban Buffalo country club. Officials tell local media that seven different police agencies were called in late Saturday to break up the fight at the Orchard Park Country Club. Officers say dozens of the approximately 200 guests were involved in the melee, which broke out after a member of the wedding party was tossed off the premises for inappropriate behavior.
  • Police: Man damages 2 golf courses after breakup

    Police: Man damages 2 golf courses after breakup

    Tuesday, September 16 2014 7:59 AM EDT2014-09-16 11:59:02 GMT
    New York State NewsNew York State News
    Authorities say a 23-year-old western New York man caused tens of thousands of dollars in damage at two Buffalo-area golf courses after being dumped by his girlfriend.  Police in the suburban town of Orchard Park say Austin Christopher used his pickup truck to tear up the ninth green at Harvest Hill Golf Course early Saturday morning.
    Authorities say a 23-year-old western New York man caused tens of thousands of dollars in damage at two Buffalo-area golf courses after being dumped by his girlfriend.  Police in the suburban town of Orchard Park say Austin Christopher used his pickup truck to tear up the ninth green at Harvest Hill Golf Course early Saturday morning.
  • Enterovirus outbreak hits New York

    Enterovirus outbreak hits New York

    Tuesday, September 16 2014 6:26 AM EDT2014-09-16 10:26:36 GMT
    The New York Health Department has confirmed that a viral-based severe respiratory illness has sickened several children in the state. New York is the latest state to confirm cases of sickness caused by enterovirus EV-D68. More than a dozen children are sick, officials said. The CDC has said this unusually severe outbreak has caused serious breathing problems.
    The New York Health Department has confirmed that a viral-based severe respiratory illness has sickened several children in the state. New York is the latest state to confirm cases of sickness caused by enterovirus EV-D68. More than a dozen children are sick, officials said. The CDC has said this unusually severe outbreak has caused serious breathing problems.
Powered by WorldNow

WHBQ-TV | Fox 13
485 S. Highland St.
Memphis, TN 38111

Main Station: (901) 320-1313
Newsroom: (901) 320-1340

Didn't find what you were looking for?
All content © Copyright 2000 - 2014 Fox Television Stations, Inc. and Worldnow. All Rights Reserved.
Privacy Policy | New Terms of Service What's new | Ad Choices