Reclusive Inventor Of Gaston Glock Dies

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John Oyewale Contributor
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Gaston Glock, the reclusive Austrian engineer who invented the Glock handgun, died Wednesday, his company announced.

“In Memoriam Gaston Glock 07/19/1929 – 12/27/2023. Perfection continues,” GLOCK, Inc. posted to its website.

The Glock handgun was invented as Austrian military sought a new, innovative firearm in the 1980s, Reuters reported. The Glock company used to manufacture a variety of items including curtain rods and military knives, until Glock and his team of firearms experts produced the semiautomatic, largely plastic Glock 17, the outlet noted.

The design, revolutionary at the time because it combined ease of assembly with strength, lightness, and portability, won the company the weapons contract with the Austrian military.

The Glock pistol featured in the 1998 movie “U.S. Marshals,” in which Tommy Lee Jones’ character tells Robert Downey Jr.’s to “get yourself a Glock and lose that nickel-plated sissy pistol.”

“These things are so cool. They shoot underwater! You can pour sand in them and they’ll shoot. Shoot every time. It’s a good choice,” Jones’ character later says of the Glock pistol.

It became a weapon of choice for many U.S. police officers and is referenced in multiple rap songs, Reuters noted.

Former Iraqi dictator Saddam Hussein had a Glock with him when U.S. special forces captured him in a spider hole in his hometown of Tikrit on Dec. 13, 2003. The 9mm pistol is on display in the George W. Bush Presidential Museum.

The easy-to-conceal weapon also became the subject of controversy following its use in mass shootings by former U.S. Marine machine gunner Ian David Long on Nov. 7, 2018, and White supremacist Dylann Roof on June 17, 2015. (RELATED: Trump Considers Buying A Gun With His Face On It During South Carolina Campaign Stop)

Glock generally avoided public media appearances but hit the headlines when he survived an assassination attempt by his assets manager in 1999 and when his 49-year marriage with first wife, Helga, collapsed in 2011, per Reuters.

“His life’s work will continue in his spirit,” GLOCK, Inc. said in a statement.