CLARKSBURG, W. Va. — A retired 82nd Airborne soldier who was once known for having the fastest two-mile run time in his battalion currently lives in a barn, horses confirmed today.
Thomas Chatterton, 32, of Clarksburg, entered basic training at Fort Benning in 2004, where instructors quickly noticed his speed and endurance on the track, said one horse who lives in the barn with Chatterton.
“We do three things around here. We run fast, eat oats, and we piss all over the floor. Anyone who wants to be a part of that, well, we’re happy to have you! Damn happy! We certainly don’t discriminate based on race, gender, orientation, or ability to take shits so big that a team of professionals has to come clean them up with snow shovels,” he said.
Chatterton got serious about running in middle school and remained dedicated in high school, according to his mother.
“Tommy was always a fast kid,” said Wendy Chatterton. “His 1600-meter time is still the state record for boys under 14. He went through the usual phases high school boys go through, you know. He grew his hair out into an enormous tail he could flap at flies, he slept standing up.”
She added: “I have to admit, though, we were somewhat surprised when he began soiling his pants wherever he was standing.”
Horses claim that Chatterton’s dedication has inspired them to be better competitors on the track.
“Tom’s an athlete through and through. Incredible focus,” said one horse who has raced with Chatterton. “Back at the barn, he’s the nicest guy you’ve ever met. But, the moment that gun goes off and all the other horses blow immediately past him, he’s all business.”
At 32 years old, Chatterton is a bit of an anomaly on the track, according to Crackling Thunder, a gray-spotted horse. Especially, he said, after a horrific trampling accident that occurred last year.
“The average life-span of a horse is about 25-30 years, so Tom’s really got guts to be mixing it up with these younger studs,” Thunder told reporters. “We take injuries pretty seriously here. They can mean life or death. After he got trampled that last time, I knew he was having some second thoughts.”
Video of the incident, which happened at the Hollywood Casino’s Charles Town Race Track near Charles Town, West Virginia, gained popularity after airing on America’s Funniest Home Videos, said one horse who was there.
“Oh, it was awful,” he said. “Here’s a competitor who only draws breath out of the love of the sport, and these jackals are putting slide whistle and boing-boing sound effects on the video of him getting trampled by 16 race horses charging at full speed? It makes me sick.”
Horses say that Chatterton wasn’t fazed by the incident, though, and his recovery has gone well.
Although he declined to speak to Duffel Blog reporters for this article, he did release a statement through his trainer, telling fans that any paper mail they send him is usually eaten or used as bedding by other horses.