Football player turned businessman enjoys making Valley home - WFMJ.com News weather sports for Youngstown-Warren Ohio

Football player turned businessman enjoys making Valley home

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Ed Muransky has that magic touch and is a good listener.

"Big Ed" has his hands in just about everything and whatever "his touch" is, it's working.

"I love building things and nurturing them. It's fun growing things. But at the end of the day, the tree still grows," Muransky said in reference to a tree logo in nearly all his enterprises; including The Muransky Companies,  Southwoods Health Care facilities and The Lake Club. "If you take care of people, you can have something be a hundred-years-old and still be great."

Muransky was an offensive lineman at Cardinal Mooney under legendary coach Don Bucci. 

He was the biggest kid on the team at 6'6" and 250 pounds but didn't know how talented he was. 

"My first football mentor, Ted Loolakis, told me after practice, 'Do you have any idea what's on the horizon if you just work at it. You can go anywhere in the country.'"  Muransky admitted he wasn't sure of his talents, but it was that conversation when "the light bulb went off."

Muransky went to the University of Michigan under coach Bo Schembechler. "He was like a second father to me and my family," Muransky said.

Muransky never missed a play and was a Second Team All Big 10 selection.

Big Ed was drafted by the Oakland Raiders and won a Super Bowl in 1984. 

But it was a short career of three years and a conversation with his father-in-law that turned his attention to the business world. 

"He told me everyone has their last day in football. I think you would be good in business. You're already doing some things. Why don't you think about it."

Muransky did some real estate work with the DeBartolo Corporation and while with Edward DeBartolo, Sr. at a trade show in Las Vegas, stumbled upon the Auntie Anne's Pretzel franchise. 

"Mr. D wanted to know why a lot of people were in line at closed stand," Muransky recalled. "I told him they were waiting for pretzels and the rest is history."

Muransky is the chairman of the Auntie Anne's holding company that has 90 stores in 19 states, including one at the Eastwood Mall in Niles.

He always had the vision of returning to his Mahoning Valley roots and it was another conversation that turned his attention to health care. 

"My good friend Dr. Lou Lyras was complaining about a local hospital where medication was late, a patients car was stolen and he said why don't I look into doing a surgical center in Boardman and that's how we got started."

The Southwoods Complex, between Market Street and Southern Boulevard, includes an imaging, pain management, physician services and sleep center and serves more than 70,000 patients annually.  "I am motivated from the responses I get from doctors , patients and customers in the field."

Muransky knows what's happening in all of his companies. "I read every survey on Sunday. I want to make sure the Southwoods way is continuing. Whether someone is complaining about a cold waiting room to how we changed someone's life.  I want people to know they can eat off our floors and we deliver compassionate care."

Muransky is married to his wife Chris, and they have three grown children.

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