5 incredible facts you never knew about WWE owner Vince McMahon

WWE owner Vince McMahon
WWE owner Vince McMahon
Matty Paddock

Vince McMahon has amassed a simply incredible career at the head of WWE. Quite simply, he has seen and done it all.

Not only has the man at the top of the table in WWE loomed large in the boardroom for decades, he's also never been shy about stepping in front of the cameras and thunderous crowds all around the world.

After all, for decades he was the voice of many a wrestling fan's childhood, thanks to his work as the lead announcer for the company, welcoming viewers and guiding them through the action with his own animated, charismatic style.

He was also, of course, known as one of the greatest villains of all time, his rivalry with Stone Cold Steve Austin as 'Mr McMahon', the very picture and definition of authority, earning him hatred from all four corners of the globe.

But while lifelong fans will feel like they'll know all there is to know about Vince McMahon, we've compiled 5 facts and stories you'll be less than familiar with.

#5. He grew up without his father

Vince McMahon Sr.
Vince McMahon Sr.

The McMahon family, as we know them now, are very well established and are well known to fans all around the world. But while Vince's children, Shane McMahon and Stephanie McMahon, all thrived with careers in the industry from a relatively young age, Vince McMahon himself endured a difficult beginning to his own childhood.

In a 2012 interview, Vince confirmed that he didn't grow up with his father, Vince McMahon Sr, who had left the family home when the younger Vince was just a baby. It was some 12 years or so later that the two were reunited.

Vince recalled in the interview:

“When I was 12 or a little older.... my father and his mother came to visit. I must have behaved myself because I got invited up to be with him. It’s funny how you don’t know what you’re missing if you never had it. Then when I met my dad, I fell in love with him. We got very, very close, but we both knew we could never go back."

Prior to meeting his father, Vince had been living wth his grandmother.

#4. He survived a motorcycle accident

Vince McMahon survived a nasty accident
Vince McMahon survived a nasty accident

Vince McMahon is often thought of as in-Vince-able (see what we did?) thanks to his relentless work-rate and desire to run WWE despite his relatively elder years.

While McMahon might not be quite indestructible, you could be forgiven for thinking as much, particularly given he survived a nasty motorcycle accident around 20 years ago.

Not long after winning the Royal Rumble in 1999, McMahon was riding his motorcycle when he collided with a car that was reversing off its driveway. McMahon cracked his tailbone but, thankfully escaped any major injuries.

On his Something to Wrestle With Podcast, WWE producer Bruce Prichard recalled of the incident:

But he got up and walked away. He was [angered] they took him away for observation. He was probably more[annoyed] that his bike was messed up. Did not miss a beat. Just kept right on going. ‘I’m fine! God damn. Just a little bump!’ Like nothing happened.”

It's hardly surprising that McMahon managed to dust himself off and carry on despite the fairly painful incident - around that time he was busy tussling in the ring with arch-rival Stone Cold Steve Austin, even winning the WWE Championship himself during that period.

#3. His was a rags-to-riches story

Vince McMahon
Vince McMahon

While Vince McMahon is a billionaire who, many would have you believe, lives a billionaire's lifestyle, it would be wrong to assume that the man himself was born into money and has only ever known wealth and power. That said, that's very much the idea he'd want you to have of his 'Mr McMahon' character.

In fact, it's worth noting that things were a little bit more different in real life. Indeed, relative to the more salubrious surroundings of his adult life and WWE career, Vince McMahon actually grew up in challenging circumstances. Pinehurst, California, and the trailer park in which he lived with his mother is a world away from the plush offices and buildings he'll now be more familiar with.

Vince himself resents the suggestion, he was in 'poverty', though, saying in a 2001 interview:

"[Laughs] A New Moon trailer, eight feet wide. Trailer park isn't poverty. You don't have much privacy, but there are nice things about it. Everything is compact. And it beats some other places."

In 2020, McMahon's net worth is said to be around $2 billion.

#2. He wasn't always Vince McMahon

A thumbs up from Vince McMahon, sitting backstage during a WWE show
A thumbs up from Vince McMahon, sitting backstage during a WWE show

We've noted the vast and well-established family unit that currently exist as the WWE-centered McMahon Family. While Vince McMahon undoubtedly still sits at the top of that particular table as the leader of the WWE empire, you may not know that he wasn't always Vince McMahon - literally.

McMahon was actually raised for much of his formative youth going by the name Vinnie Lupton. We revealed earlier that he was living with his grandparents when he first met his real father but, before that, he spent time living with his mother and a number of step-fathers. Among them was Leo Lupton, a man that Vince McMahon does not remember fondly.

In a candid interview years ago, the WWE Chairman revealed that he was, sadly, the victim of abuse at the hands of Lupton, saying he was someone who "enjoyed kicking people around."

McMahon said:

It's unfortunate that he died before I could kill him. I would have enjoyed that.

Irrespective of whether some may consider McMahon a controversial figure in the wrestling world, there is little arguing with the fact that he has overcome adversity in his own life.

#1. He was only co-owner of WWE for a while

Gorilla Monsoon. Pic: TheChairShot
Gorilla Monsoon. Pic: TheChairShot

When Vince McMahon first acquired what is now WWE from his father, Vince McMahon Sr in the 1980s, it's clear his sights were set on national and global domination from a wrestling perspective. He was keen to move operations from a regional and territorial level to something far grander, as evidenced by what became WrestleMania - an event first staged in 1985.

You may not know that, in actual fact, Vince did not become the owner of WWE straight away. For a period of time, he only owned half the company, with his father selling the other 50% to other notable figures within the company, including veteran wrestler turned legendary commentator, Gorilla Monsoon.

McMahon, clearly a shrewd businessman from the off, took a bank loan out in order to offer each of those gentlemen $100,000 plus a job for life in WWE. They agreed and, from that moment on, WWE was Vince's empire.

Monsoon, in particular, would continue to work closely with McMahon afterwards, voicing many of the company's major pay per view events. In 1994, Vince McMahon and Monsoon were the two-man commentary team for WWE's Survivor Series event.

Monsoon sadly died in 1999 at the age of 62.

Edited by Akhilesh Tirumala


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