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'Am I dying?': 3 York men eat world's hottest pepper to 'pay debts' to donors

York men donate thousands of socks, eat world’s hottest pepper in challenge

A York police officer and two businessmen collected 3,350 pairs of socks for the "Socks for the Sockless" drive to donate to area shelters. To celebrate reaching their goal, the men ate the Carolina Reaper — the world's hottest pepper.
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A York police officer and two businessmen collected 3,350 pairs of socks for the "Socks for the Sockless" drive to donate to area shelters. To celebrate reaching their goal, the men ate the Carolina Reaper — the world's hottest pepper.

Three York men gave new meaning to the phrase sock it to me Friday.

After collecting thousands of pairs of socks for local homeless shelters, they promised to eat the world's hottest chili pepper..

York Police Lt. Dale Edwards, Patrick Mitrovich and Dugan Meredith promised they would swallow a pepper so hot, it's in the Guiness Book of World Records.

The Carolina Reaper is grown right here in York County, in Fort Mill by Ed Currie of the PuckerButt Pepper Co.

"I don't even like jalapeno peppers," Mitrovich. said. "So it's going to be bad."

The three men set a goal to collect 2,500 socks for Socks for the Sockless, started by Mitrovich. They collected 3,350 pairs of socks.

To "knock this out of the park," they promised donors they would "pay their debts to the community for helping us out," Mitrovich said.

Appropriately, they ate the peppers at the York Fire Department.

Meredith was the first to eat the pepper. Three minutes later he asked:. "Am I dying?"

After hiccuping, he said "never again."

Edwards casually chewed his pepper and drank raw milk he brought. He said his faith items helped -- a St. Michael's coin, a pocket angel and a cross.

"God's got me on this," he said.. "One supervisor said 'Get your time sheet filled out today in case you die.'"

Mitrovich took advantage of gallons of vanilla ice cream.

"This helps," he said to a room of laughing law enforcement officers. Pepper eaters, he said, had advised him to chew it 10 times before swallowing it.

It didn't help. Minutes later, he was leaning over a trash can.

Edwards chuckled at his friends.

"It was your idea," he said.

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