Springfield Public Safety Dispatcher John DeForest Brings Heart to Lung Association's Fight for Air Climb Springfield | American Lung Association

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Springfield Public Safety Dispatcher John DeForest Brings Heart to Lung Association's Fight for Air Climb Springfield

(October 29, 2014) -

John DeForest who is a public safety dispatcher for the Springfield Fire Department and works as a special operations tech for Massachusetts Department of Fire Service  has never shied away from a challenge or from helping others.  He recently attempted the Guinness World Record for running while wearing full firefighter gear at the Hartford Half Marathon earlier this month and dedicated each mile he ran to a fallen fighter.  DeForest says he only started doing road races in 2008,  the first one being the Worcester 6 Road Race honoring the six Worcester firefighters killed in the line of duty.  After that first race, he started doing them in full firefighter gear to up the intensity. 

In a few weeks DeForest will be challenging himself again as he raises money for the American Lung Association of the Northeast. DeForest will again suit up in full firefighter gear this time climbing the 48 flights of stairs at One Monarch Place in Springfield on Saturday, November 8.  DeForest has been participating in the Lung Association’s Fight for Air Climbs in Springfield and throughout the Northeast for the last eight years.

“I love the challenge of the event and the fact that I am helping support a good cause,”  says DeForest.  “In the course of our work, firefighters see a lot of people affected by lung disease and we ourselves are at increased risk because of our exposure to smoke.  This is a way to both help the people we serve and help fellow firefighters.”

More than 250 participants, as well as firefighters who will compete in the event’s separate Firefighter Challenge, are expected at the 7th annual Fight For Air Climb Springfield.  The event, which is taking place during Lung Cancer Awareness Month, raises funds to support the American Lung Association’s research, education and advocacy related to lung cancer and all lung diseases. 

Registration is open at fightforairclimb.org.  The first climber will take off at 9 a.m. at 1414 Main Street. The after party and awards ceremony will be held in The Sheraton’s MVP Pub which is located inside Monarch Place. The Fight for Air Climb Springfield is sponsored by Monarch Place, WMAS 94.7, WWLP 22, AMP, CBS Sports Radio, Sheraton MVP, Telemundo, Poland Spring and Kindred.   For more information contact Danielle Ferrari, event manager at SpringfieldClimb@LungNE.org or at 860.838.4371.

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