Eight personnel from the Oxford Fire Department raised $200 in donations for the American Lung Association while getting in a crucial workout by running up and down the bleachers at Oxford High School’s football stadium on Sunday.
The training event was held in support of the American Lung Association’s annual “Fight for Air Climb” in Detroit, which aims to promote climbing as a part of a healthy lifestyle and to honor those who are affected by a lung disease.
Oxford firefighter Kevin Snell organized the event to promote the importance of fitness and a healthy lifestyle among his fellow firefighters and to honor the memory of fallen fire heroes who lost their lives at the World Trade Center on September 11, 2001.
A moment of silence was held in respect to those firefighters before participants began the training event.
Participants walked up and down the bleachers located on Oxford High School’s football field in full uniform during the event.
They ran the flight of 21 stairs on the bleachers 50 times to equal a total of 1,050 steps—the same number of stairs which are located within the Renaissance Center in Detroit, where the Fight for Air Climb has been held in past years.
“The main idea of this training event is to promote a healthy lifestyle by using the stairs among my peers. There is an enormous requirement for proper health and fitness in the fire service,” Snell said. “Cardiac arrest is the leading cause of death for duty-related deaths in the fire service, so it is imperative that firefighters train accordingly. We are required to train daily to always be prepared for any physical task that may be placed in front of us.”
By wearing their full uniforms and air tanks, Snell said firefighters carried an extra 50 to 60 pounds on their person as they completed their laps.
Those who participated were Oxford Fire Department Sgt. Benjamin Frantz, Firefighters Kevin Snell, Ryan McLeod, Alan Adorjan, and Cody Roop; along with three recruits Kohli Johnson, Kyle Jeffery and Mandalyn Sterner. Other participants were local residents Chelsea Snell and Nicholas Frantz.
A total of $200 was raised in voluntary donations by those who attended which will be donated to the nonprofit American Lung Association, according to Snell.
Ryan McLeod, who is a 7-year seasoned veteran firefighter of Oxford, led the team with a time of 22 minutes and 35 seconds.
The majority of the participants finished in about 30 minutes, with everyone completing the goal in under 40 minutes, according to Snell.
“Because the firefighter mentality is ‘no one is left behind’ after completing the training, several team members joined the last remaining members and completed extra stairs at their side. All participants were winners today and we look forward to participating in this event again next year,” Snell added.