Mark Moseley on how he connected with the Murrell family and Five Guys~
“We loaded up in his car, went over to his dad’s house, the rest is history. His dad jumped out of his chair about two hours later, grabbed my hand, and said, “Hey, let’s make this happen. Let’s have fun doing it.” I’m still today, 16 years later, working on a handshake. That’s how honest these people are. Jerry and Janie, they are some of the best people.”
Andy Ockershausen: This is Our Town. This is Andy Ockershausen with a very special, very dear friend, very successful ex kicker in the National Football League. There’s not many of those that are still alive that were successful, but Mark Moseley then became a, and still has become a very successful business man. I think he’s a role model for so many football players now. Mark played …
Mark Moseley: A kicker being a role model?
Andy Ockershausen: He kicked for the Cleveland Browns, the Houston Oilers, and the SuperBowl Champion, Washington Redskin.
Mark Moseley: And I was drafted by the Eagles.
Andy Ockershausen: Is that right? Number one by the Eagles.
Mark Moseley: My number was three.
Andy Ockershausen: Oh, was that it?
Mark Moseley: But I was drafted, what was it? In the 14th round. They had 18 rounds back then and I was …
Andy Ockershausen: You didn’t play for them.
Mark Moseley: I did my first, my rookie year. 1970, I played for the Eagles.
Andy Ockershausen: Well, we missed that, but I didn’t know that, but we forgive you for that.
Mark Moseley: Well, now you know it. I know you don’t forget anything.
Andy Ockershausen: Mark, knowing you as a kicker and watching you all these years, you always had us in suspense. Will he or won’t he? Fortunately, he did 300 out of 457 in his career. That’s a tremendous successful rate. Scored a total of 1,382 points. He’s been so successful and he now serves the best hamburger in the world with over 3,500 stores. Here comes Five Guys and Mark Moseley. Mark, welcome to Our Town.
Mark Moseley: Thank you, thank you, thank you. I’m glad to be here.
Andy Ockershausen: You know, we’ve been trying to get you for a long time, because 10 years ago we had a reunion of sorts with a lot of friends of mine and a party that we had at Comcast and did a show out of it. Mark was there and appreciated so much, but then to watch his career, I think that was the first time in public that I had the chance to say “Mark Moseley’s with Five Guys.” Because most of the audience, and we had a pretty good crowd there, guys you grew up with, did not know that. Mark, that was 10 years ago and you’ve been so successful.
Mark Moseley: Yeah. Well, I think it was your 80th birthday, wasn’t it?
Andy Ockershausen: It was, correct.
Mark Moseley: I believe. It was a great night.
Andy Ockershausen: It was a fabulous party.
Mark Moseley: You had a lot of good people that …
Andy Ockershausen: We had five Hall of Famers of the National Football League. I don’t know why, they all needed work, I guess. God bless him, Sam Huff. We both have great feelings for Sam, and telling some stories about him. He’s lost the edge now and he’s really out there. It’s so sad.
NFL Hall of Famer Sam Huff – Friend and Mentor
Mark Moseley: I tell you what, he’s a great friend. Sam was known as the big hitter. He was the guy. For him to be friends with a kicker, was not real kosher. For some reason, Sam took to me and we’ve been friends ever since.
Andy Ockershausen: That’s good protection for you.
Mark Moseley: Well, he was already retired when I came to Washington here in ’74, but he was still doing the radio show. He was doing the games. I got to know him real well. I’ve participated in his golf tournaments for charities and his West Virginia Breeder’s Cup.
Andy Ockershausen: A good citizen, as you say Mark, like you were.
Mark Moseley: I’m telling you, he was one of those guys that mentored the younger guys along, and said, “You’ve got to do these things. You need to be out there helping people recognize your name. They want to be around you, so go help them raise money.”
Andy Ockershausen: He was such a very, very, very important part of the success of WMAL and all the things that we did. I can’t tell you how much it means that you remember doing those things. We were talking about it before the show, about charity golf. Now, we started a charity golf tournament with Harden and Weaver for Children’s Hospital.
Mark Moseley: Absolutely.
Andy Ockershausen: It was the only one that I ever heard of. We started it in the late 60s. Now, there’s one a day almost.
On Starting a Charity Golf Tournament for the Ronald McDonald House
Mark Moseley: Oh gosh, yeah. The tournaments that we play in today are, every day you could play in one. You’re right, back then it was the only one, Harden and Weaver. As a matter of fact, from that, I started, I think I may have had the second one, because I started the one for Ronald McDonald House, back in the early 80s.
Andy Ockershausen: That is it. I remember the Ronald McDonald. Right.
Mark Moseley: We had that tournament for years. Actually, well up until after I retired. That was a thing, George Allen was big about those, our coach, was very big on us being a part of the community.
Andy Ockershausen: Getting out, getting up and getting out.
Mark Moseley: Back then you weren’t here for two or three years and then you went somewhere else for the money. Unfortunately, that’s the way it is today. These players …
Andy Ockershausen: Money talks.
Mark Moseley: These players, they’re here today and gone tomorrow. The fans don’t really get to know them that well. Back then, we were part of the community.
Andy Ockershausen: In so many ways.
Mark Moseley: Oh gosh, yeah.
Andy Ockershausen: Before there was a Washington Redskins and before the draft, there was a young man from Laneville, Texas named Mark. I don’t know where Laneville, but Texas is in the news now unfortunately every minute and in a terrible way. There’s so many little towns in Texas, where I can see those little Baptist churches. Every time I’ve been to Texas I see that, it’s such a Baptist place.
Very Humble Beginnings in Laneville, Texas
Mark Moseley: Texas is a Southern Baptist state, there’s no doubt about it. That was unfortunate what happened. I wish there was some way we could find a way to stop all this mess. It just makes me sick to hear all these terrible things that are going on, not just here in the U.S., but around the world. There’s a lot of bad things going on.
Andy Ockershausen: Well, Laneville, Texas is close to …
Mark Moseley: It’s close to Longview, Texas, that’s about it.
Andy Ockershausen: Which is close to …
Mark Moseley: Which is close to Dallas, I guess. Laneville is, actually there’s nothing there now. When I was born, there was a gas station with a little grocery store and the school, and that was it.
Andy Ockershausen: Sounds like Last Picture Show.
Mark Moseley: Yeah, I was born out in the country in a house that my dad built out of wood that he cut off of our place there, that my granddad owned.
Andy Ockershausen: Wow.
Mark Moseley: Matter of fact, my mother said the day I was born, a cold front came through, and they had to put newspaper up on the walls, to keep the cold air from coming through the … Back then, they just had one exterior wall and you had cracks everywhere. She said they put newspaper up, to try to keep the cold air out, so the doctor could deliver me.
Andy Ockershausen: That’s what made you so tough Moseley.
Mark Moseley: I guess, I don’t know.
Andy Ockershausen: That you kept out on those cold days and those cold storms that you had to kick.
Mark Moseley: She said it was a cold day in March.
Andy Ockershausen: You went to high school in Texas of course.
High School in Livingston, Texas and College Recruitment
Mark Moseley: I did. Livingston, Texas, which is …
Andy Ockershausen: Probably a one room schoolhouse or close to it?
Mark Moseley: No, we had about … I had 47 in my graduating class in 1966.
Andy Ockershausen: Wow, that’s a big school.
Mark Moseley: Back then, there were four classes of schools and we were double A. We were right in the middle.
Andy Ockershausen: You were recruited by A&M.
Mark Moseley: I was recruited by … Actually, I was recruited by a bunch of schools, but I ended up choosing A&M early.
Andy Ockershausen: More than a kicker, correct?
Mark Moseley: More than a kicker. I played both offense, I was an All State middle linebacker and running back in high school.
Andy Ockershausen: There you go, with Sam Huff.
A Good Start – Out Kicking All the Kickers on Scholarship at Texas A&M
Mark Moseley: Yup. I was recruited as both offense and defense. I played my freshman year at A&M doing both of those. Then I went out one day and out-kicked all the kickers they had on scholarships there, so I was the kicker too. That’s kind of the way my kicking really has evolved, because everywhere I went, I just seemed to be able to out-kick everybody, even though that wasn’t my primary job that I did for the team.
Andy Ockershausen: Right, but that got you noticed. You switched from A&M to Austin State.
From Texas A&M to Steven F. Austin University
Mark Moseley: Steven F. Austin University, yes sir, up in Nacogdoches, Texas.
Andy Ockershausen: I know Nacogdoches.
Mark Moseley: Say that three times. People get tongue tied when they say Nacogdoches.
Andy Ockershausen: Nacogdoches.
Mark Moseley: It’s a good school. Back then, it was NAI, now it’s Division One 2A, I guess is what they call. They’re in there with Lamar.
Andy Ockershausen: What is it, like 10,000 now? Is it bigger than that?
Mark Moseley: Yeah, because there was 6,000 when I was in school there.
Andy Ockershausen: Wow, it’s probably at least doubled.
Mark Moseley: I’m sure it’s up to 10,000.
Andy Ockershausen: It’s a famous school. I mean I’ve heard of it forever. It’s not a new school to me. I don’t know why, other than Mark Moseley. I knew you’d gone to school there.
Mark Moseley: There have been a few guys that have come out of there, that have gone on and played a little bit. None of them have been the MVP of the league, but that’s why they kind of put me at the top of the list as graduates from there.
Andy Ockershausen: None of them were kickers. You were drafted out of school, and you married in school or when you got out?
On Becoming a Father in College
Mark Moseley: No, I was married when I was in school.
Andy Ockershausen: I thought I remembered that, some in there.
Mark Moseley: My first daughter, my daughter was born, my oldest daughter was born December the 7th, and now she’s getting ready …
Andy Ockershausen: December 7th, can’t forget that date.
Mark Moseley: Yeah, and she’s … Not December 7th, it’s December the 23rd, I think is when her birthday is. She’s going to be 50 years old. It was 50 years ago, when I was a sophomore at Steven F. Austin, when she was born. I remember I had to go take a test that morning. I had a geology test that I had to take, and I took her mother to the hospital at 3:00 in the morning. I was studying. My wife’s in there having a baby, and I’m out in the waiting area studying for a geology test. I went that next morning and I think I flunked the test, if I remember correctly. My mind wasn’t really there.
Andy Ockershausen: I would say so.
Mark Moseley: I flunked the test I think, then she was born.
Andy Ockershausen: I’m sure. If you told your daughter that story, she owes you big.
Mark Moseley: I’m proud of her. She graduated …
Andy Ockershausen: You have four other children, correct?
Mark Moseley: I do, yes, I have five children.
Andy Ockershausen: They’re all grown now?
Mark Moseley: All of them are grown and I have grandkids, I have 14 grandkids. I’m getting ready to, in January, supposedly the end of December, January 1st, a great-grandchild.
Andy Ockershausen: Wow, of the first daughter?
Mark Moseley: No, my second daughter’s child.
Andy Ockershausen: Not the theology daughter.
Mark Moseley: No, no.
Andy Ockershausen: Mark, all of them born in Northern Virginia?
Five Guys – A Family Affair
Mark Moseley: No, my three children that were born here were Meghan, Lindsay, and my son Mark Jr. Mark and my oldest daughter work with me with Five Guys. I own 11 Five Guys stores and three Popeye’s, down in the North and South Carolina area.
Andy Ockershausen: Big money.
Mark Moseley: Well, I started those down there for my kids. Two of them work there. My youngest daughter works for me, as my assistant with Five Guys here. Then, as I said, my son works down in Myrtle Beach. He’s lived down there since he went to college down there.
Andy Ockershausen: Your son went to school down there?
Mark Moseley: He went to Georgetown Prep first, he was going to go to, what is that? Coastal Carolina, but his best friend was going there, that’s why he went down there. He decided he didn’t want to go to school anymore, so he went to work. A few years later he called me up one day and said, “Hey dad …” Actually, what happened is he got robbed by gunpoint. They guys laid him down in the back room back there and put a pistol to his head and said, “You give me the combination to the safe or I’m fixing to blow your head off.” That scared him and he called me up that afternoon and said, “Hey dad, I think I want to do something different.” At that time, he was working for Sprint, I think it was.
Andy Ockershausen: Not a Five Guys?
Mark Moseley: Not a Five Guys. Now he works, he’s been with me now for what? I guess 12, 13 years.
Andy Ockershausen: He manages your stores in that area?
Mark Moseley: He oversees and builds, and does a whole ball of wax down there. Then my oldest daughter is a CPA. She graduated from Baylor, and she handles all the business parts of the business. I really don’t have to do anything except guarantee all the loans, when we have to borrow money.
Andy Ockershausen: You cash the checks too Mark.
Mark Moseley: Well, I try to leave that up to the kids. I just put money in them so they can be successful.
Andy Ockershausen: That is a great idea.
Mark Moseley: Just trying to help give my kids a head start a little bit, because it’s not easy out there in the business world these days.
Andy Ockershausen: But you’ve done it. We’re going to take a break now. I’m going to come back and talk to Mark more about his life and about Five Guys. I’d also like to talk to him about his sister, and what he and his family went through because of the relationship that I had with you through WMAL. This is Andy Ockershausen, and this is Our Town.
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Announcer: You’re listening to Our Town.
Andy Ockershausen: This is Andy Ockershausen, this is Our Town, and having a conversation with Mark Moseley, who has been a very dear friend to WMAL. We all love WMAL and the connection with the Redskins and Washington and WMAL and the players, was so intense. Back in those days, we were all close. Mark Moseley was like part of our family. Mark had a serious, serious problem in his relationship with his sister, who he lost. I wanted to talk about it with Mark because you were a big help to WMAL, because we had some problems here too with two girls that were lost, of our talent, John Lion. Your sister was a nationwide story Mark.
Mark Moseley: Yes, it was. This was 1979. Jack Pardee was the coach at that time. It was during the football season. I think that’s why it had so much play, because she was …
Andy Ockershausen: You’re probably right.
Brutal Rape and Murder of Pamela Moseley Carpenter and the Long Road to Justice
Mark Moseley: It was October the 2nd, I think it was October the 2nd or the 22nd. I think it’s the 2nd. No, her birthday was the 2nd, it was the 22nd, October 22nd, a guy broke into her home and beat her and raped her. She lived long enough though to identify the guy that did this.
Andy Ockershausen: In Texas.
Mark Moseley: In Texas, in Livingston, Texas, 1979. It so happened that the Deputy Sheriff that was with her in the ambulance, and the driver was one of my guys that I played sports with there in Livingston. Livingston’s a small town, at that time they only had about 800 people.
Andy Ockershausen: Your family was close to Livingston, but not in it.
Mark Moseley: Yup. While she was on the way to the hospital, she gave them a description. The guy that was driving it knew exactly who it was, because he had hired this guy to deliver a refrigerator to my sister’s house that week, a week before that. He knew exactly who it was. He told the Sheriff. The Sheriff knew who it was because this guy had just been out of … He had been in prison for two years of a five year sentence for raping three other women.
Andy Ockershausen: Oh my God.
Mark Moseley: One of those women was his sister, which was ironic. He went right to his house, he knew exactly where he lived. The guy was still sitting on his front porch swinging in a swing, still had on a t-shirt that had her blood all over it.
Andy Ockershausen: They nailed him right there.
Mark Moseley: They nailed him, they got him. Unfortunately, he was tried four different times.
Andy Ockershausen: At the beginning was the arrest, but it lasted for so long, for you and for everybody, correct?
Mark Moseley: It lasted for almost 40 years. He was in prison. He was on death row this whole time. Finally, I guess about seven or eight years ago, they were going to try him again, for the fourth time. They decided not to. They asked us as a family, would we accept, and by that time my father was gone, and he was killed in an accident on a tractor, but they said, “We now have life without parole in Texas. Back when he committed the crime, there was not life without parole. Now we could put him in prison and he would be there until he was …”
Andy Ockershausen: Keep him there.
Mark Moseley: Yeah, they would keep him there. We agreed to it, and that’s where he is now. It was a terrible thing, because my parents had to go to all these trials.
Andy Ockershausen: All the trials.
Mark Moseley: They went all over the country to these trials on him, because it even came up here to the Supreme Court one year. They actually have a Penry Moseley Bill, that the Supreme Court ruled on back years ago.
Andy Ockershausen: The interesting part, to me, was knowing you and knowing what you went through and knowing what your family went through, we were involved, WMAL was involved with John Lyon, his two daughters were kidnapped in Kensington, right here. They finally settled that trial this past year. They finally … I don’t know whether they put him away or whatever they did, but that was 40 years.
Mark Moseley: It’s amazing that things last that long, just to try somebody.
Andy Ockershausen: It just go on and on.
Mark Moseley: They do, they go on and on and on.
Andy Ockershausen: Criminal justice system.
Mark Moseley: Yeah. We’ve kept up with all these things. I was very active then, after that, with a couple of different organizations that help families that didn’t have the finances to be able to have lawyers and do things. I was involved in some of those. It was a dramatic time, because it happened, as I said, during the season. It happened on a Thursday, I flew home that day. We had the funeral on Saturday, I flew back that night and played Sunday, against the New Orleans Saints.
Andy Ockershausen: Back in Washington? You came all the way back here?
Mark Moseley: I did. I flew back here and played. My dad said, “Son, your sister would not have wanted you to miss it. Your team depends on you,” which I was already, I had already made the decision that I had to come back for the game on Sunday. We didn’t have … Mike Bragg would be the backup kicker, and as good as he could do …
Andy Ockershausen: We still see Mike of course, he’s still around town. I’ve seen him at a couple of alumni functions. Mark, it was great to have you. I know our guys talked to you about what you went through, what we were going through with our family, with John Lyon. It’s a tragedy, but it was very helpful to a lot of people. I’m sure over the years, people have relied on you for some condolence.
Mark Moseley: We’ve relived it a lot. My kids, my two oldest daughters grew up with it because they were old enough to understand. Matter of fact, my second daughter Ellen has written a book about it. It’s out there. It describes what they felt as youngsters. She was nine I think, when this happened.
Andy Ockershausen: Wow.
Mark Moseley: She was old enough to realize what was going on. Life is full of ups and downs, and we learn to rebound from the downs and hope that we have more ups than downs, when the final down comes. I cannot complain. God’s been good to me. I’ve had a wonderful life.
Andy Ockershausen: Boy, Mark, you can say that.
A Wonderful Life Full of So Many Opportunities
Mark Moseley: I’ve had so many opportunities. I grew up in Ecuador, South America, in the jungles. That was an experience that any kid would love to have. Then going on and being able to play professional football for 16 years, was a real blessing. To play with the players that I played with, great players, under great coaches.
Andy Ockershausen: It’s all about the people.
NFL Hall of Famer Sammy Baugh and Other Great Washington Redskins
Mark Moseley: It is. I’ll tell you, the older you get, the more it is about the people. I played with Theisman, and Riggins, and the Hogs, and Joe Gibbs, and Art, and Darrell, all those guys who are great Redskins, I played with. The only one that I regret that I didn’t really get to play with was Sammy Baugh. But I do have his autograph. He gave me his autograph on one of those old leather helmets.
Andy Ockershausen: Good old Texas boy, huh? Was from Sweetwater, Texas, as I recall.
Mark Moseley: I was very, very …
Andy Ockershausen: To be in that man’s company, a legend.
Mark Moseley: I was in awe when I was with him. It’s great to have had the career and been with the people. George Allen was a great man that I played under, as a coach, and Joe Gibbs. Those were two of the …
Andy Ockershausen: You really had the …
Mark Moseley: I had the best.
Andy Ockershausen: Oh boy.
Mark Moseley: I had the best times because of …
Andy Ockershausen: They were growth times for the Redskins.
Mark Moseley: I played with the old guys, the Over the Hill Gang, and Joe Gibbs and that group, that went to all the SuperBowls.
Andy Ockershausen: That was the money group.
Mark Moseley: I was very fortunate to have a great, long career, to play with a lot of great players and coaches.
Andy Ockershausen: We’ll be right back and talk to Mark now, not about his football, because that’s past. What we’re going to talk about is the present. This is Andy Ockershausen talking to Mark Moseley.
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Announcer: You’re listening to Our Town with Andy Ockershausen, brought to you by Best Mark Communications.
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Andy Ockershausen: This is Andy Ockershausen. This is Our Town. We’re talking with Mark Moseley, and during this conversation, he popped up with something I hadn’t heard before. We researched Mark, as we usually do for our guests, with no mention, but he mentions Ecuador. Out of the blue, Mark Moseley has got a connection with Ecuador.
Growing Up in Torrington, Wyoming and Guayaquil, Ecuador
Mark Moseley: Yes, I did. Actually, I spent 1951, my family and I went over to Ecuador, Guayaquil, Ecuador. My dad was hired by the AID Department here in the government, Ecuador, he was given 30 million dollars to go find a crop that they could help the farmers over there. Their average was about $200 a year, of income. When he got over there, he was actually teaching school at the University of Wyoming while he was working on his Doctorate degree in agriculture.
Andy Ockershausen: The Wyoming part, you didn’t live in Wyoming too, did you?
Mark Moseley: Yeah, I lived in Torrington, Wyoming. Then we moved out to the ranch, lived in Yoder, Wyoming, where he ran a ranch for one of the top people at the school, while he was going to school and working on his Doctorate degree. Then he was hired by the AID, they came and asked him if he would go to Ecuador and try to help them find a crop that they could grow, to help the farmers increase their incomes.
Andy Ockershausen: Boost the economy.
Mark Moseley: Yes. He determined they could grow Bananas. That was in 1951, no ’56, I guess ’57.
Andy Ockershausen: While you were there.
Mark Moseley’s Dad’s Influence on Ecuadorian Agriculture and Economy
Mark Moseley: While we were there. He actually, this story is crazy. He went to Panama, when he decided they could grow bananas, he went to Panama, the Navy had stored all this equipment after the Korean War, there in Panama. He went there and found, picked out … They had this mountain of parts and pieces and stuff like that. He knew what he was looking at, most people didn’t. He bought all this equipment, he bought 20 barges, these landing barges that they used during World War II, to land troops.
Andy Ockershausen: Oh yeah, absolutely. Higgins boats.
Mark Moseley: He loaded them up with all this junk and they went through the Panama Canal, down the Pacific coastline, to the River Guayas there in Ecuador, which flowed into the Pacific, and went upstream to Guayaquil, Ecuador, where he set up shop and bought some land. Then he had to bring all the people in and train them to put all this equipment together, then how to operate it. Then he had to train them on what to do. Then he had to go out and convince the land barons down there, which there were about 12 families at that time, that controlled most of the land. He had to convince them that bananas could be grown and be a profitable crop for them, which he did.
When we left in 1961, the first load of bananas was shipping out on … We had a picture of these guys walking across these little 12 inch planks with two bunches of bananas on their shoulders, loading them in this ship, to come to the U.S., and it was Chiquita Banana.
Andy Ockershausen: Wow.
Mark Moseley: Which right now, today, Ecuador’s one of the number one, it is the number one producer of bananas in the world.
Andy Ockershausen: Mark, what a great story.
“My Dad was an amazing man.”
Mark Moseley: Yeah, my dad was an amazing man.
Andy Ockershausen: It sounds like it.
Mark Moseley: He was very intelligent.
Andy Ockershausen: From Wyoming to the wilds of …
Mark Moseley: He was an East Texas farm boy. He grew up on the farm raising watermelons in Texas.
Andy Ockershausen: But he knew how to grow things.
Mark Moseley: He knew how to grow things. It was during the Depression, and he had to run the farm while my granddad was working in the oil fields there at Carthage, Texas. He would run the farm for dad and go to school when he could. Ended up being the valedictorian of his class and going on to college and doing great there. Then doing these other things.
Andy Ockershausen: Mark, in addition to your football experience, you’ve got the genes of a businessman in you.
Mark Moseley: I do.
Andy Ockershausen: That led you to another life, another career for you out of football. How in the world did you get connected with Five Guys.
Five Guys Connection – Jerry and Janie Murrell
Mark Moseley: Actually, it’s a long story, but I convinced the family, back in 2002, that we could take their four stores and franchise them, and turn them into a nice business. Sure enough, now we have 1,500 stores open. We have 3,500 sold in the U.S. We have 110 stores internationally right now. That’s why I’m traveling. I’ve sold everything in the U.S., so now I’m traveling to other parts of the world. The demand, people are just calling me off the wall, from every country in the world.
Andy Ockershausen: The guys that started it, I don’t know their names. I did know their names.
Mark Moseley: It’s the Murrell … Jerry Murrell and Janie Murrell, they’re the mom and dad.
Andy Ockershausen: They’re local guys.
Mark Moseley: They’re all from right here in Arlington.
Andy Ockershausen: Fairfax County, right?
Mark Moseley: Well, Arlington, Virginia.
Andy Ockershausen: Oh, is that it?
Mark Moseley: Yup. Their first stores, their first four stores were down in that area of Arlington to Springfield.
Andy Ockershausen: What was the connection? Through football or just through … Did they know you?
From Moseley Burgers to Five Guys – Meeting Matt Murrell
Mark Moseley: Actually, no. What happened was I started my own hamburger place called Moseley Burgers in, I guess it was 2000, 2001. I had a financial partner with me who came in one morning and said, “Hey, I just sold the business.” I had no idea he was even trying to sell it, but he sold it. He said, “I’m on my way out of town today. I’ll be back in 30 days. I’m going on a safari out in Africa.” I said, “Don’t look for me here when you get back.”
About two hours … This is the story, two hours later, Matt Murrell, who is one of the sons, one of the Five Guys, just happened to come into my store. He had heard about it and he came in and introduced himself. We sat down and started talking. I told him what had happened. He said, “You know Mark, I’ve been trying to talk Dad into franchising, but he won’t do it. Maybe if you come in and help us, maybe he’ll consider doing it.”
We loaded up in his car, went over to his dad’s house, the rest is history. His dad jumped out of his chair about two hours later, grabbed my hand, and said, “Hey, let’s make this happen. Let’s have fun doing it.” I’m still today, 16 years later, working on a handshake. That’s how honest these people are. Jerry and Janie, they are some of the best people.
Andy Ockershausen: Obviously that’s because they’re so successful and they operate a very, very wonderful, wonderful store, everywhere.
Not Your Typical Business Model
Mark Moseley: They’re very, very intelligent when it comes to how to run a business. Harvard right now is doing a study on our company, because we’re so different than any other company that’s ever been formed. We do everything just the opposite of what you’re supposed to do to be successful in business, and they can’t believe it.
Andy Ockershausen: Your own model though, it’s all …
Mark Moseley: We don’t advertise. The people out there in radio world don’t like to hear that.
Andy Ockershausen: I didn’t like to hear that. I called them for TV. I said, “Mark, we’ve got this TV show and we’re doing …” He said, “Andy, I hate to tell you this, we don’t advertise.” I said, “Come on Mark, you do.” “No, we don’t advertise.” It’s incredible.
Mark Moseley: We have so much confidence in our food, our food tells our story for us. We don’t have to advertise because everybody that comes in, they go out of there raving and ranting about our food.
Andy Ockershausen: And they come back.
Mark Moseley: And they come back and they tell everybody else. We do everything by word of mouth, and that’s really, very seldom does that work like it has worked for us.
Andy Ockershausen: You’re still headquartered in Northern Virginia?Mark Moseley: We’re right out on Route One, right out here in Lorton, Virginia. You see our building …
Andy Ockershausen: For worldwide.
Mark Moseley: Yup, we have a big building out there now, that we’ve only been in two years and we’ve already outgrown it. We’re looking for more space now. It’s been a great business. I’ve been blessed beyond anybody’s imagination. I feel very fortunate that I’ve had an opportunity to be a part of it, and for the Murrell’s to allow me to be a part of it. They let me have a little small piece of the company back at the very beginning, and it’s changed the lives of my family. My kids …
Andy Ockershausen: Absolutely, what you’ve done with that, you’ve grown those spots.
It’s a Family Affair
Mark Moseley: It’s been a life changing event for my whole family. They all have opportunities now that they probably wouldn’t have had otherwise.
Andy Ockershausen: No question about that.
Mark Moseley: I’m very grateful for having the opportunity to be with them. I’m now traveling so much, so I’m all over the world.
Andy Ockershausen: Mark, are the five still alive?
Mark Moseley: Yes, their whole family is, mom, dad, and the five sons.
Andy Ockershausen: They’re related, right?
Mark Moseley: They’re all brothers. The Five Guys are the five brothers, Jim, Matt, Chad, Ben, and Tyler, in that order.
Andy Ockershausen: Sounds like they’re the Rich brothers.
Mark Moseley: They’re all active in the business. They’re all very active in the business.
Andy Ockershausen: Manny, Moe, and Jack, I mean that’s incredible. They stuck right to their basic thing. They didn’t try to be something they’re not.
Keeping It Simple
Mark Moseley: We haven’t changed anything. When we first started, people were saying, “In five years, you’ll be just like all the other fast chains,” but we haven’t. We still have the same menu we started out with. The only thing that we’ve added in all these years is milkshakes, to our menu.
Andy Ockershausen: That’s sort of like dessert now, right?
Mark Moseley: Yeah. That’s who we are. I’m very, very happy and very glad to have had a little part in developing it and seeing it grow from four stores to 1,500 stores.
Andy Ockershausen: The ground floor.
Taking It Internationally
Mark Moseley: We’re just going all over the world now.
Andy Ockershausen: Whatever happened to your store? Did they keep it open or did they close it? Your hamburger place.
Mark Moseley: It became a Guatemalan chicken place called Pollo Campero, which has been very, very successful.
Andy Ockershausen: I bet. The chicken places are doing well.
Mark Moseley: I’m very happy that the good Lord sent me in the direction he did. You never know, he closes one and then opens the next one. I was very fortunate to have had that opportunity. Now it’s changed my family’s life, that’s for sure.
Andy Ockershausen: Like I said before, your genetic background says that you’re going to be successful in business, because your dad knew some things, and he obviously exploited it and did a great job.
Moseley’s Business Acumen is Genetic
Mark Moseley: He brought me up the right way, of not giving me everything and making me work for it.
Andy Ockershausen: That’s true of your football career. Nobody handed you that job. You were the kicker and you paid the price for it.
Call from Washington Redskins’ Coach George Allen is a Game Changer
Mark Moseley: I’ll tell you a quick story here, because I know we’re running out of time, but when I first came to Washington, the reason I came here was I got a call. I was out of football, George Allen called me.
Andy Ockershausen: Two years you were out, right?
Mark Moseley: Yes, and George Allen called me in February of 1974, his assistant Tim Temerario called me and he said, “Mark, I’m calling. Coach Allen wants to talk to you.” I get on the phone with George Allen and he says, “Mark,” he says, “You remember when Houston played the Redskins a couple years ago in the driving rain storm?” I said, “Yes sir, I do.” He said, “You kicked three or four field goals. I forget how many it was, against my team, my Redskins, in a driving rain storm.” He says, “Now I’m going to always have a great defense, I need me a kicker that can get me three points in any kind of weather. I think you’re that guy, because you’ve proved to me before that you did it.”
Andy Ockershausen: You did it.
Mark Moseley: He says, “I want you to come in. I’m going to send you a contract, sign it, and we’ll see you in July.” I said, “Coach, you don’t want me to come up and at least make sure I can still kick.” He says, “No, just come on up and beat out the other 12 kickers that we’re bringing in this year at training camp, and the job’s yours.” That was a true story.
Andy Ockershausen: Where’d you go, to Carlisle then? Were they in Carlisle?
Mark Moseley: We went to Carlisle, Pennsylvania.
Andy Ockershausen: You kicked your way into the job.
Mark Moseley: I kicked my way into a job. I out-kicked those other guys.
Andy Ockershausen: That was, the Over the Hill Gang was still around, right?
Mark Moseley: That’s who I was playing with, yup. The Ron McDoles, the Diron Talberts, the Lenny Hausses.
Andy Ockershausen: Those names, right?
Mark Moseley: The big guys that were great players here that …
Andy Ockershausen: McVean, who took care of the equipment.
Mark Moseley: Tommy McVean, I just saw Tommy, he was at our reunion here a couple of weeks ago.
Andy Ockershausen: He always shows up for that.
Mark Moseley: Yup, Tommy was there. Like I said, I’ve been very blessed. I am so, so thankful to the good Lord.
Andy Ockershausen: Mark, but you’ve given so much to Our Town. Your store’s a part of Our Town, a big, big part of Our Town. Everything in Northern Virginia is Our Town, and everything in Maryland is Our Town. Mark Moseley, you’re a huge part of Our Town. I’m so glad you’re still with us.
Mark Moseley: Well, thank you. I am too. I’m glad you’re still with us.
Andy Ockershausen: I am too. You’re a WMAL guy as far as I’m concerned, what you’ve been through, it’s great.
Staying in Our Town After Football – It’s “hard to take a Texan out of Texas. . .”
Mark Moseley: I’ve been fortunate to have been able to be a part of this area. That’s why I stayed here after football was over with. I didn’t go back to Texas, and that’s hard to do. That’s hard to take a Texan out of Texas, and move to Virginia.
Andy Ockershausen: Impossible.
Mark Moseley: I’ve been very thankful for where I am.
Andy Ockershausen: I’m so glad you stayed Mark. You’re a big part of Our Town and we thank you so much. If you get a chance, go to Five Guys and mention Mark Moseley’s name. No discount.
Mark Moseley: We’re not trying to turn this into a commercial for me, are you?
Andy Ockershausen: No, no. No, you did. It is such a big story Mark. It’s part of your life and who you are. When I announce that to people for the first time, their jaws drop. Nobody knew about you and Mark Moseley and Five Guys.
Mark Moseley: Again, with Five Guys, I’ve got great people or we have great people that I work with every day. We were fortunate, when the recession came, we hired a lot of good, young people, and they’re doing a great job for us out there, spreading Five Guys.
Andy Ockershausen: You’re a big employer, and that’s important to our economy.
Mark Moseley: We have over, I think over 40,000 employees around the country now, with all of our restaurants.
Andy Ockershausen: You’ve got 3,500 on the drawing board.
Mark Moseley: Yeah.
Andy Ockershausen: Mark, I hope you live long enough to see it to be 10,000 restaurants.
Mark Moseley: Well, I do too. Thank you.
Andy Ockershausen: Mark Moseley, we love you and love you being part of Our Town.
Mark Moseley: Thank you Andy, I appreciate it. Thanks for having me on.
Andy Ockershausen: This is Andy Ockershausen. We’ll be back with another guest in two days.
Announcer: You’ve been listening to Our Town, season three, presented by GEICO, our hometown favorite, with your host, Andy Ockershausen. New Our Town episodes are released each Tuesday and Thursday. Drop us a line with your comments or suggestions. See us on Facebook, or visit our website at ourtowndc.com. Our special thanks to Ken Hunter, our technical director, and WMAL Radio in Washington D.C., for hosting our podcast. Thanks to GEICO, 15 minutes can save you 15% or more on car insurance.
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