The mystery man who was photographed while he shoveled snow off of the iconic Boston Marathon finish line during Tuesday’s blizzard has been identified.
The shoveler was none other than bartender Chris Laudani of Back Bay Social, a neighborhood restaurant.
Boston Police released pictures on social media of the man as he shoveled the snow from the route on Boylston Street. Using the hashtag #WhoShoveledTheFinishLine, Boston Police asked the public to help solve the mystery of the hardy soul.
Laudani, an avid runner himself, said that he left his bartending shift at Back Bat Social around 3:30 p.m. on Tuesday and helped his coworkers shovel snow from around the bar. After that, Laudani decided to continue shoveling in one more spot.
“I decided I’m going to go dig up the finish line because I love that race and everything the city stand for. I love the city, I love the Boston marathon,” Laudani told ABC News.
Laudani said he ran the Boston Marathon in 2011.
The Boston Marathon finish line is his “favorite place in the entire city,” he said. “It doesn’t deserve to be covered in snow because it in a symbol of Boston and our community.”
Laudani said he was shocked by the media attention he received. He also said he didn’t want to be hailed as a hero. He said he “wanted to do a good deed for the community because I love Boston.”
It took Laudani about 20 minutes to shovel the line, after which he went back to the bar, dropped off his manager’s shovel and went home, he said. It wasn’t until Wednesday that Laudani realized that someone had taken a photo and that people wanted to talk to him.
The finish line has major significance since the site of the twin bombings at the Boston Marathon that killed three people on April 15, 2013.
The Boston Athletic Association, which organizes the annual marathon, applauded the deed.
“For someone to brave the winter blizzard to clear our finish line for us is yet another statement as to what our event means not only to runners but also to Americans,” Executive Director Tom Grilk said in a statement. “We, at the Boston Athletic Association are the organizers and are responsible for the management of the Boston Marathon, but an act like we see depicted here proves that — in Boston — everyone owns the Marathon.”