Minibikes and the Wrestling Mat: Hendersonville’s McCrary Twins

The McCrary Twins. Image from Good Spark Garage.On December 7, 1946, Billy and Benny McCrary, the world’s largest twins, were born in Hendersonville.

After contracting measles at age 4, the twins’ weights quickly ballooned. By age 10, they each weighed 200 pounds, and by 16, each tipped the scales at more than 600 pounds. Billy and Benny would top out at 814 and 784 pounds, respectively according to the Guinness World Book of Records. Their enormous size has since been attributed, at least in part, to pituitary gland damage caused by the early bout of measles they both experienced.

To stem the boys’ growth, their parents bought a farm, believing perhaps the boys would burn up calories while working. But they had wanderlust and quickly quit high school to move to Texas and brand cattle. In a promotion with Honda and Holiday Inn, the McCrarys rode motorcycles from the east coast to the west. They entertained on the Tonight Show and at Myrtle Beach, big men atop tiny minibikes. They went on to become professional wrestlers under the name of the McGuire Twins, training in Mexico and appearing across the U.S. and Japan.

The McCrary Twins as immortalized on Family Guy (left) and The Simpsons (right). Image from Good Spark Garage.

Billy died in 1979 during a minibike stunt at Niagara Falls. Benny took other wrestling partners, among them Andre the Giant, before entering semi-retirement devoted to golf and evangelism.  He died in 2001. Their fame continues to grow. They have been immortalized in animation on The Simpsons and Family Guy.

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