Firefighters head skywards
22 May 2015
EASTERN Bay firefighters will be watching their steps tomorrow – all 1103 of them.
Eighteen Eastern Bay firefighters are among 750 New Zealand firefighters taking part in the annual Firefighter Sky Tower Stair Challenge.
The Eastern Bay contingent are from the Whakatane, Ohope, Matata and Kawerau brigades.
The event is run to raise funds for Leukaemia and Blood Cancer New Zealand, a national charity supporting patients and their families living with blood cancers and related blood conditions.
Firefighters have run sausage sizzles, shaken buckets, sold raffle tickets and marched the streets to raise money. According to the stair challenge website yesterday, the national total raised so far is $800,249.
On Tuesday, Whakatane brigade members took part in a circuit at Curves gym, wearing firefighting clothing. The firefighters struggled with some of the more co-ordination-focused movements, but had a solid workout ahead of their big climb, brigade member Adyn Ogle said.
Afterward, Curves manager Deb Woollett presented the team with $2500.
She said the gym was happy to support a great cause. Members of the gym pledged to walk a collective 11 million steps to support the leukaemia and blood cancer cause and began last month. They exceeded that target by three million, with Janis Robb, the gym’s top stepper, taking over 750,000 steps.
The first Sky Tower competitor will set off at 8am tomorrow, with the last climber expected to reach the top at 2pm.
The Eastern Bay firefighters participating in the challenge are:
Whakatane: Tracy Rhodes, Jamie Rhodes, Hamish Galloway, Andrew Wilson, Adyn Ogle, Grant Farmer, Craig Pinkerton, Cam Smailes, Geoff Brown and Steve Hanlen.
Ohope: Matt Good, Matt Lowe and Kris Dale.
Matata: Nicole Dobson, Eric Horwood, Mark Hofert and Kieran Walmsley.
Kawerau: Rod Kirk.
Source: Whakatane Beacon