ILION — Local businessman Patrick Vincent, candidate for Assembly in the 118th District, accepted the endorsement of the United Mine Workers of America Local 717, the Remington Arms employee’s union.

"I am honored to accept the endorsement of UMWA Local 717. I have long been an active firearms enthusiast, and am very fond of the products Remington makes. They are a staple of our local community and I will fight tirelessly to keep them here. Many politicians make very similar statements on behalf of Remington, but I am unique because I am not afraid to go after anyone directly and publicly, regardless of party affiliation, in my fight for Remington and the workers and families that depend on this plant. I also feel this is a major example of our local businesses and communities demanding change, demanding results. My opponent has served his time, but we need a true fighter to come in, be brash and get the results we deserve," Vincent said in a news release.

Vincent is a Navy veteran, a retired state Department of Corrections officer and a successful businessman of more than 20 years. Over the years Vincent has applied for and received more than $2 million in state and federal grant dollars for projects to help communities and boost struggling businesses. Most recently, Vincent wrote for $20,000 for the Old Forge Hardware Store and was awarded it by the USDA.