The company my grandfather worked for was the very backbone of that small society, everyone knew someone who worked there. The news that they were closing down after nearly 50 years came as a chock and a complete surprise to everyone. The unions tried to negotiate, and even suggested they would buy the factories, but came nowhere. Over 350 people lost their jobs, and the whole city lost its breathing air.
My grandfather lost more than that. You could call it his reason for living, and after so many years serving his workers there was no way back for him. He was mentally as well as physically paralyzed and sat more or less still in a chair for two weeks. If he was a quiet man before, from that point he didn't speak at all. His family tried to be there for him the way he never had been for them, but it proved to be of little or no comfort.