More than 300 firefighters from all across B.C. braved the 48-storey climb at the Sheraton Vancouver Wall Centre Hotel.
Both Agassiz and Harrison firefighters competed in the 19th annual Climb the Wall event to benefit the B.C. Lung Association.
This year’s event saw the largest turnout of firefighters as they each hauled up 50 lbs of full firefighting gear up flight after flight of stairs to benefit the 1 in 5 British Columbians suffering from respiratory conditions of all kinds.
“This was a standout year for our Climb the Wall event, in large part thanks to the enthusiasm of our key event partners, chief amongst them B.C.’s firefighting community,” said BC Lung Association CEO, Chris Lam in a statement. “The sense of community spirit in the room was palpable. I could see hundreds of sweaty, smiling faces around me, all there supporting one another. It was clear that something special was achieved.”
Agassiz team captain Ross McInroy placed 69th overall and in his gender and 23rd in his category at a time of 9:47. Spencer McColl finished with a time of 12:04, putting him at 179th overall, 174th in his gender and 65th in his category. Christopher Renaud ranked in at 252nd overall with a time of 17:05, putting him at 240th in his gender and 119th in his category. Matthew Griffith rounds out the Agassiz team at 259th overall, 244th in his gender and 80th in his category with a final time of 20:51.
The Harrison Hot Springs firefighters had three results recorded for their inaugural climb. Zack Martyn was the first finished, ranking 46th overall and in his gender and 36th in his category with a finishing time of 9:26. Alex Maslin was a bit farther behind at 14:17, finishing 224th overall, 215th in his gender and 73rd in his category. Sarah Fraser came in at a time of 21:25, finishing fifth in her category, 17th in her gender and 262nd overall.
Firefighter Craig Smith of the Burnaby Fire Department was the fastest time overall at 6:05. The current record for fastest time is 4:17. This year’s oldest competitor was 83 years old and the youngest was three. This year’s event raised nearly $130,000 for the B.C. Lung Association, 50 per cent more than what was raised last year.
To learn more about the Climb the Wall event and how to help the B.C. Lung Association, visit them online at www.stairclimb.ca and bc.lung.ca.