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The chest hair patriot: Former Fauquier High football player runs Boston Marathon

Thursday, May. 8 | By Peter Brewington

Former Fauquier High football and lacrosse player Pete Kidwell ran the 2014 Boston Marathon with his chest air shaved in a stars-and-stripes pattern. --Courtesy photo
Former Fauquier High football player Pete Kidwell became a bit of hit on Twitter and in Massachusetts when he completed the Boston Marathon on April 21.

He ran the entire race shirtless with an American flag pattern shaved into his chest hair.

"I heard lots of Captain America cheers," said Kidwell, who also wore tight shorts that looked like the flag.

The Boston Herald interviewed Kidwell after he displayed his stars-and-striped chest proudly for more than five hours all around Boston. A picture of the 2008 Fauquier graduate appeared in local media. It also hit Instagram and was tweeted and retweeted with words like "Most patriotic chest hair ever."

"Before I knew it I had my friends making comments," said Kidwell, still surprised how his chest art went semi-viral.

Of his Boston Herald interview, Kidwell said, "I don't know what I was saying. I so tired."

He ran with friend J.P. Craven, who was hurt in the Boston Marathon bombings last year as a spectator. Craven was struck by shrapnel in the calf and head, Kidwell said, but recovered thanks to treatment at the Boston Medical Center.

Although all the "U.S.A" chants they heard provided motivation, the 26.2-mile run was a struggle, Kidwell said. An accomplished athlete who played football at Davidson College, Kidwell is not a distance runner. He weighed 240 pounds when he began training and got down to 210 after four months.

"But 210 is still excessive," he said. "I cramped after the first 10 miles and finished in five-and-half hours."

All the more time to entertain the crowd. He considered sporting a big beard or mustache, but focused on his torso "to take advantage of all the chest hair I've got," he said.

Kidwell graduated from Davidson in 2012 and is now a commercial leasing and real estate broker for Beacon Partners in Charlotte.

"I've been doing it two years. I love it," he said.

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