LAMAR, MO -- State economic development officials are looking into ways to help hundreds of workers who face unemployment after O'Sullivan Industries, a ready-to-assemble furniture manufacturer and the largest employer in Lamar, MO, announced it will shut down, according to TheAssociated Press.

Several other major employers in the surrounding area said they will be unable to hire more than a handful of the 735 workers who will lose their jobs this spring and summer as O'Sullivan winds down and ceases production in Lamar.

Keenan Tipper, spokesman for the Missouri Department of Economic Development, said state and company officials were meeting Wednesday to discuss help for O'Sullivan employees.

A tentative meeting for employees and the state's Rapid Response Team is set for the week of May 21-25 at the plant. A job fair is tentatively set for June 22-23, but no site has been determined, Tipper said.

Founded in the St. Louis area in 1954, the maker of ready-to-assemble furniture moved to Lamar in 1965.

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