Douglas Firefighter Matt King was in Seattle, Wash. this past Sunday trying to raise money for the Leukemia and Lymphoma Society.
According to the events website there were 1,473 male and female firefighters taking part in the event. King finished 241st with a time of 17:10. Andrew Drobeck of the Missolua City Fire Dept. was the overall winner finishing with a time of 10:48.
The event is a stairclimb, in the Columbia Tower which is the second tallest building west of the Mississippi, where firefighters in full structural gear (minus the hood) and SCBA (breathing from the air tank) climb from the fourth to the 74th floor.
“That is 69 floors, 1,311 steps, 788 feet of elevation gain, and if my stepmill is to be believed 1.75 miles of stairs,” King said.
The primary reason for this event is to raise money for the Leukemia and Lymphoma Society.
”I believe that I am one of four participants from Arizona this year,” King said. ”From looking at the roster I see two firefighters from Tucson Fire and one from Rural Metro-AZ are signed up. This is the sixth time I will compete.”
King said in 2012 $1.2 million was raised for the Leukemia and Lymphoma Society with 291 departments from around the world represented.
”I train by doing plyometric workouts combined with using a stepmill,” he said. “I also run stairs at Armondo de Luca Stadium on occasion. All the travel expenses for this trip are paid for by me. All donations go to the Leukemia and Lymphoma Society.”
About the Leukemia and Lymphoma Society and blood cancer:
Since it was created in 1954 the Leukemia and Lymphoma Society (LLS) has given over $814 million in aid to researchers who have come up with many new treatments for these cancers. They also help patients and families dealing with these cancers.
This is a fund raiser for the Washington/Alaska Chapter, but the research done in this region goes to help everyone.
Every five minutes, someone in the U.S. is diagnosed with blood cancer.
Leukemia is the number one disease killer of young adults under 20. More than 617,000 Americans are living with blood cancer.
Douglas Fire Department fire clerk Norma Galindo is a survivor of Non-Hodgkins Lymphoma.