Farnham Fire Department to Participate with Hundreds of Others in the Fight for Air Climb: Buffalo | American Lung Association

Farnham Fire Department to Participate with Hundreds of Others in the Fight for Air Climb: Buffalo

(March 9, 2015)

It’s not uncommon for firefighters to be called out to tall, burning buildings; however, on Saturday March 14, there won’t be any smoke or flames. Members of the Farnham Volunteer Fire Department will be climbing 800 stairs at One Seneca Tower, the former HSBC Center, in full gear to help the American Lung Association raise funds for lung disease research, education and advocacy. Registration begins at 7:30 a.m. and the first climber will start at 9 a.m.

Fight for Air Climbs are the American Lung Association’s most unique fundraisers. Climbs take place in prominent skyscrapers, stadiums or arenas and involve walking, running or racing up hundreds of steps. Sometimes called a "vertical road race", teams and individual participants can use the event as a fitness target, as a race, or as a great way to be active and meet new friends.  

Farnham Fire Department, team captain, Evan Russell said members of the department decided to participate as a way to bond with each other and support the Lung Association. For Russell, participating in the climb is important to raise awareness about the chemicals used in everyday, household items which can affect a person’s lungs if it’s burning. “Any types of plastics or synthetics that can omit hazardous gases and toxins children's toys, furniture, auto parts, even things as odd as coffee creamers in large quantities can burn at a high rate and be very volatile,” Russell said.

“The Lung Association is proud to have members of the Farnham Fire Department participate in our Fight for Air Climb in Buffalo,” said Jeff Seyler, President & CEO of the American Lung Association of the Northeast. “Having first responders participate in our climbs is imperative, because the health of their lungs is extremely important for their safety and for the general public. The American Lung Association sincerely thanks the Farnham Fire Department for their service and for participating in our climb to spread our mission of preventing lung disease.” 

Russell also noted that it’s important for all firefighters to properly clean their equipment to maintain healthy lungs. “Unfortunately, we sometimes see firefighters who don’t clean off their equipment or are outside of a fire and not wearing their masks and years later they’re diagnosed with lung disease like mesothelioma,” he said. 

Returning for his second year, Russell said he’s looking forward to helping spread the Lung Association’s mission and getting more of his fellow firefighters to join the climb. “We’re excited to jump on the bandwagon and educate people about the importance of improving lung health and preventing lung diseases.” 

All proceeds from the Fight for Air Climb: Buffalo will directly fund lung disease research, advocacy and education; including smoking cessation programs, COPD/asthma management, and fighting for stronger clean air standards. To register, learn more about the climb or to make a donation to help save lives, visit the event website at fightforairclimb.org. Questions about the event, how to form a team or how to become a volunteer can be directed to Event Manager Annalise de Zoete at BuffaloClimb@LungNE.org or 585.666.1402. The Fight for Air Climb-Buffalo is proudly sponsored by NFTA-Metro, One Seneca Tower, Roswell Park Cancer Institute, The Buffalo News, New York Institute of Massage, WGRZ-TV, M&T Bank, Buffalo Professional Firefighter Association, Local 282, Impact Sports Performance, Erie County Fire Chief’s Mutual Aid Organization and Poland Spring.

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