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Chicago Celebrates 10 Years of the Citys Largest Stair Climb

(February 23, 2018) -

For more information please contact:

James Martinez
[email protected]
(312) 445-2501

On March 11, thousands will gather for the 10th anniversary of the Fight For Air Climb at Presidential Towers presented by UnitedHealthcare, the American Lung Association in Greater Chicago announced today.

The event, often referred to as a "vertical road race," empowers individuals to invest in their own personal health and fitness. After months of training and fundraising, the event concludes with a stair climb of up to four towers. Each tower is 45 floors, 585 steps, so those who climb all four towers will complete a total of 180 floors, 2,340 steps.

“We have been working for a decade to get the Fight For Air Climb at Presidential Towers to the massive, impactful stair climb that it is today. Thanks to the wonderful Chicago community, this event helps save lives locally by raising awareness about the risk factors of lung disease, helping people manage their illness through educational trainings and by funding research to find a cure for lung cancer,” said Kristen Young, the executive director of the Lung Association. “On March 11, climbers can expect the most impactful event yet, with inspiring firefighters, a unique atmosphere and a fantastic after party at Slightly Toasted.”

Since the first Fight For Air Climb at Presidential Towers in 2009, there have been 12 people who completed the climb each year. Some climb for fitness, while others climb for a much more personal cause.

"After losing my father to lung cancer, I was determined to do something to help others. The next month, I signed up to ‘Climb the Towers’ and have been doing it every year since,” said Sue Kalesz-Chong, Fight For Air Climber. “This will be my 10th year participating and I'm proud to say a few years ago, my children officially joined our team. I climb to help those we can and to honor those we've lost.”

In Illinois, there are more than 1.3 million people who suffer from lung disease, including more than 6,500 who battle lung cancer. Almost 90 cents of every dollar raised goes directly to education, research and advocacy. Over the past 10 years, the event has raised more than $3 million.

Registration for the 2018 Fight For Air Climb is currently open online or by calling 312-781-1100.


About the American Lung Association

The American Lung Association is the leading organization working to save lives by improving lung health and preventing lung disease, through research, education and advocacy. The work of the American Lung Association is focused on four strategic imperatives: to defeat lung cancer; to improve the air we breathe; to reduce the burden of lung disease on individuals and their families; and to eliminate tobacco use and tobacco-related diseases. For more information about the American Lung Association, a holder of the coveted 4-star rating from Charity Navigator and a Gold-Level GuideStar Member, or to support the work it does, call 1-800-LUNGUSA (1-800-586-4872) or visit:

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