From Your Local Lung Associationh3>Fighting Lung Disease One Step at a Time
2016 marked the 10th anniversary for the Fight For Air Climb Atlanta and the energy level at the event was high. This unique athletic and fundraising challenge is open to all fitness levels and attracts everyone from elite runners looking for a new challenge, families seeking a fun and community-minded activity, to corporate teams looking to build camaraderie and teamwork. There were even teams of firefighters climbing in full gear participating. The 2016 Fight For Air Climb Atlanta broke many local records and ranked in the top 10 of climb events nationwide.
While the success of the event relies on countless individuals, Lovette Russell stands out as a superstar! Russell was the top individual fundraiser for the 2016 Fight For Air Climbs nationwide, raising almost $23,000! In addition, Russell’s colleagues at Coxe Curry formed Team Hustle for Russell, who in turn raised an additional $35,000. Russell suffers from pulmonary fibrosis, making breathing the biggest challenge of her life. Simple things in life - walking up a flight of stairs, laughing really hard, getting dressed in the morning - all take on new meaning and challenges. Formally a triathlete and now being oxygen dependent, she misses all of her athletic activities.
The morning of the climb, Russell delivered a very powerful message to the crowd, stating, “I so wish that I was able to participate! Since I can't win the race, I worked hard to support my team and all the wonderful climbers who are able to climb for people like me. I am still competitive so I wanted to make sure that even though I couldn’t win the race, that I raised the most money! I know, more than anyone, how important the American Lung Association is - every breath now is work for me and I am thankful for organizations like this that help to make breathing a little easier for me and others.”
Russell is a glowing example of why the American Lung Association of the Southeast is “fighting for air” and raising money to support our mission through education, advocacy, and research. We are determined to find cures and better treatments for those who are struggling for every breath they take. To join our efforts, please visit Lung.org or to find a Fight For Air Climb event near you, please visit FightForAirClimb.org. Because when you can’t breathe, nothing else matters.