MONROE TWP. — Bob Lee and his wife, Scarlett O’Hara, started their retirement with a bang when they opened Wyoming County Weapons in October.
The store, located on Route 309 in Beaumont Village, has quickly formed a niche for itself, attracting customers from as far away as Stroudsburg, Lee said.
Lee, a former mechanical contractor, has long held a dream of opening a gun shop. When he closed up his nearly 30-year contracting business and his wife retired from her sales position, the duo was not content with just relaxing.
“You know they say that things happen for a reason,” O’Hara said. “It was time (to follow his dream).”
Lee has held a life-long appreciation for firearms since he was 8 years old.
“My dad taught my brother and me, how to shoot,” he said. “We were given five bullets each. It was a friendly competition between my brother and me.”
From those early days, Lee began to learn more about firearms and the history behind them.
“They are a work of art,” he said. “It is interesting to me that a simple machine can do something that no other machine can — project a small object a long distance.”
His merchandise selection carries over his passion that includes rifles, handguns, small cannons as well as bullets, gun cleaning supplies and more.
Some firearms, such as a World War II Smith Corona 03-A3 30-06, are purchased from customers, he said.
“Sometimes guns are handed down in families,” Lee said.
Older guns are acquired through estate sales, he said.
“We do have new guns,” Lee said. “We also have a selection of left-handed guns. We are one of a few stores in the area that carry left-handed guns.”
Television and movies have sparked consumer interest in some brands of firearms, Lee said.
“’The Walking Dead’ has created interest in the Colt Python (.357 Magnum Caliber),” he said. “The Walter PPK is similar to the gun James Bond used.”
Lee and O’Hara put safety first with their business. A customer background check, through the Pennsylvania Instant Check System, is required on all modern guns purchases.
“If the gun is over 100 years old, it is considered an antique and does not require a background check,” Lee said.
Lee also wants to ensure the firearm is a good match for the customer, so he encourages them to hold the weapon and look through the gun sight.
“This is not a museum,” he said. “We want to have a relaxed atmosphere. Customers need to handle a gun and see it is too heavy or big or small for their hands, is the (gun) barrel too long.”
Reach Eileen Godin at 570-991-6387 or on Twitter @TLNews.