Twenty-four-year-old firefighter Andrew Barsalou (Bar-sah-LOO’), participating in his first stair climb, thought about his firefighter as he climbed.
When he returned home, the climb was brought back to Albuquerque in 2004, and Colorado firefighters created their own in 2005.
On Saturday morning, the fifth annual Prince George’s County 9/11 Memorial Stair Climb & Walk brought in firefighters from around the region, as well as police and civilians.
Eric Eisenlohr/Fargo Fire Department, “If you’ve met one firefighter, we’re all kind of the same”.
The climb is not a timed race, and several participants will be climbing the 110 flights of stairs in turnout gear and SCBA-protective suit and breathing apparatus-paying tribute to those who made the ultimate sacrifice.
After the climb concluded, it was time for the firefighters to catch their breath to use it for one last remembrance of the day. “We bought shirts from whatever station they were from”.
The Bridgeton Fire Department hosted the event at the Bridgeton Housing Authority Complex, where volunteers donated a small fee to climb for a great cause.
It’s the first time in Kansas firefighters have done a memorial climb like this, though it has happened across the nation. Firefighters took 30 minute intervals in an attempt to reach 110 stories.
“I absolutely look forward to this”, Stevenson said.
The National Fallen Firefighters Foundation sponsors the climb, and the head of that organization says the popularity each year proves it’s about the brotherhood and sisterhood of firefighters. They raised money for the National Fallen Firefighters Foundation.
“It’s physically and mentally draining”, Friedly said. Gear keeps heat out but it also keeps heat in. The fact that it has a beneficiary financially is great as well to go help other families out. Proceeds will help provide support to the families of the firefighters that lost their lives on 9/11.