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Firefighters Climb Against Cancer

Firefighter stair climbCORVALLIS, Ore. — Sixty-nine stories high – that is how many flights of stairs a group of Corvallis firefighters is conquering this weekend at an event in Seattle to fight cancer.

On Monday, a group of firefighters trained at Reser Stadium. The group is training for the annual Scott Firefighter Stair Climb in Seattle. On Sunday, each participating firefighter will race up the stairs of a Seattle skyscraper – in complete fire gear. The event pulls in 1,800 firefighters from all over the world who are raising money for the Leukemia and Lumphoma Society.

Despite the sweat, Corvallis firefighters are keeping in mind the memory of one of their team captains from a few years ago: Lilli Trippe, a 3-year-old who lost her battle to leukemia.

“She and her family became somewhat close to the fire department,” said Lieutenant Rob Yencopal. “She’s between my girls’ ages. And just before her fourth birthday she passed away. And looking that in the eyes. Looking at that beautiful young girl in the eyes. This carefree, wonderful princess. I just. Never want to see that again.”

The Fire Department’s Batallion Chief, Andy Louden, says the firefighters think about Lilli as they fight up the steps.

“I was drawn to be able to draw by own tag – my bib number,” he said.
And I chose her birthday.”

Firefighters say they will keep marching on, one step at a time, to try to help find a cure for cancer.

On Saturday the team raised over $1,000 at the Corvallis Brewing Supply.┬áSo far the team has raised just over $8,000 – just short of its $10,000 goal. On Tuesday from 6-9 pm firefighters will be on a stair master at Flat Tail Brewing. The restaurant will donate a portion of its proceeds to the cause.

To donate to the Corvallis team, click here.

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