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Thanks to Big Pete, a retired native New Yorker, not only were the patrons of the gift shop exposed to Mosby’s charm but also scores of other merchants, bankers and citizens of Staunton. Part of Big Pete’s routine was to stop by his daughter Sue’s shop, have a cup of coffee or two, discuss a few of the world’s problems, and then visit other members of the downtown community. Somewhere along the way Big Pete and Mosby formed a bond of mutual admiration. The two made quite a pair: Big Pete the experienced, crusty, no nonsense New Yorker and Mosby, the romantic, the innocent kid from the country. They cruised downtown Staunton in their perfectly symbiotic dance. Sometimes they took an elevator ride to the top floor to pay the bank President a visit. More often they stopped by the commercial loan department to visit with Phyllis. Mosby knew she kept dog cookies in her desk drawer just for him. What a nice lady, he thought. If Mosby was thirsty, he and Big Pete paraded around the corner to Chuck’s shop. Chuck, in the true spirit of Southern hospitality had given Mosby his own water bowl with his name on it. Chuck is a true Virgina gentleman, Mosby thought. The kid from the wrong side of the tracks was on the top of the world. Life was good. People were good.

Being blessed with such an easygoing nature, Mosby was a natural candidate for pet therapy dog training. So no one was surprised when after eight weeks of training with Carole, Mosby became a certified pet therapy dog. Mosby embraced this new responsibility with gusto. Working as a team, mostly on Thursdays, Carole and Mosby would visit one of the local nursing homes. It was truly amazing to see this hundred pound dog work his gentle magic on weak, frail and lonely senior citizens. For many Mosby provided a bright warm respite from an otherwise uneventful existence. To many Thursday night was “Mosby night.”

The kid from the wrong side of the tracks had evolved into Staunton’s unofficial Ambassador of Goodwill. No creature loved life more than Mosby.

On the unpredictable hinge of fate, the door slammed shut on Mosby’s idyllic life. A blast of buckshot from fifteen feet destroyed the face of one of God’s most beautiful creatures. The manipulations of time and space that put Mosby within fifteen feet of his murderer are as incomprehensible as the combination of events that put Mosby within fifteen feet of his savior six years earlier. Fate is fickle.

Mosby’s senseless death on August 8, 2003 and the resulting public outrage became a national story. Thanks to the power of the news media, it became clear that his death was much more than an isolated family tragedy. From articles in the local Staunton and Waynesboro papers, Mosby’s story spread to Harrisonburg, Charlottesville, Richmond and Washington, DC television stations. From the Washington Post articles, MS-NBC’s Keith Olbermann made the Mosby murder and the resultant public outcry a number one story on his “Countdown” program. From the Richmond Times Dispatch article, Mosby’s story hit the Associated Press wire service and generated news articles from Virginia to Florida to California. A trucker returning to Virginia saw the story on a Cleveland, Ohio television station. People Magazine, with the largest circulation of any weekly magazine in the US, sent a writer and photographer to Staunton to do a feature story on the murder of Mosby. A Pulitzer Prize winning photographer for the Washington Post did an internet accessible photo tribute to Mosby.

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