Army ROTC Battalion to Participate in the Fight for Air Climb in Buffalo | American Lung Association

Army ROTC Battalion to Participate in the Fight for Air Climb in Buffalo

Cadets from Buffalo State, University of Buffalo and Canisisus College Will Climb 800 Stairs to Support the American Lung Association

(March 1, 2016) -

BUFFALO, NY– The Golden Griffin Battalion Reserve Officers' Training Corps (ROTC) will be marching to the beat of a different drum come Saturday, March 12, 2016. Approximately 12 cadets will make their way up 800 stairs of One Seneca Tower to help support the American Lung Association of the Northeast.

Fight for Air Climbs are one of the signature fundraising events of the American Lung Association. The Climbs are held in prominent skyscrapers and other buildings across the country, giving participants the opportunity to join together with friends, family and co-workers as they climb the stairs of the building to the top. The Climb has been taking place for more than a decade and has raised more than $40 million to support the mission of the American Lung Association.

Alexia Matos-Mateo, captain of the Golden Griffin Battalion climb team and a Buffalo State student said the Battalion is always looking for way to get involved or give back to the community. “We want to raise awareness for things that matter. Our Battalion is composed of well-rounded people that want to help out those who need it,” Matos-Mateo said. At Alexia’s level in the Army ROTC, an MS3, cadets learn leadership and officer skills, an asset in her position as captain of the climb team.

The Golden Griffin Battalion team will “ruck-march,” which involves walking at a fast-pace over a rugged terrain with a weighted backpack up the 38 flights of stairs in full uniform. In order to prepare for the intense climb, Matos-Mateo said the team will take part in their normal, daily training. ROTC training consists of strength training, cardio and swimming, according to Alexia. The team also works out by tackling stairs at their respective schools, something Alexia says she unexpectedly enjoys. “I wouldn’t think I like doing stairs, but it’s something I have grown to love,” Matos-Mateo said.

“The Lung Association is honored to have the Golden Griffin Battalion participate in the Fight for Air Climb in Buffalo,” said Jeff Seyler, CEO  & President of the American Lung Association of the Northeast. “Having the Battalion take part in the climb is sure to help us spread awareness of our mission to  improve lung health and prevent lung disease. The Army ROTC is a strong support system to have backing our organization and we hope to continue working with them in the future.”

Alexia said the ROTC team is happy to be getting involved in such a physical event that helps raise awareness. “I wouldn’t know that lung disease is so common if it weren’t for events like the Fight for Air Climb. As college students we forget we’re going to be future leaders and we need to get involved in our communities. I am amazed how the Lung Association is run and the support they want to provide for other people.  Our Battalion is a very diverse group and we bring a lot to the table. We’re here to make Buffalo a better community and make us better leaders for tomorrow,” Matos-Mateo said.

Registration for the Fight for Air Climb begins at 7:30 a.m. and the first climber will take off at 8:30 a.m. To find out more about the Fight for Air Climb in Buffalo call 585-666-1402 or e-mail BuffaloClimb@LungNE.org. The Fight for Air Climb is locally presented by NFTA Metro and is also made possible with the support of IMPACT Sports Performance, WGRZ News, Buffalo News REFRESH, national Corporate Team partner, Kindred Healthcare and national corporate sponsor Who Pneu.

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