Cameron Johnson a volunteer firefighter at Wheatland West Fire Department is donning his firefighting gear and tackling Canada Olympic Park to raise money for a great cause.

Johnson will be participating in the 8th annual Firefighter Stairclimb Challenge on June 5, aiming to raise money for hospice care with Wellsprings Calgary.

Johnson explains what the last stair climb he attended in 2019 looked like. 

“I ran in 2019 before the pandemic started the whole building was 55 flights of stairs, I think there are 1204 actual steps. When I first got going, we were told that we weren't allowed to have any earbuds, so no music. If it wasn't for the information they had on the wall for every flight that you went up I think it would have been a lot longer and a lot more boring going up those stairs. Every flight there is a height marker and I remember one on the 40th floor that said if you could stand one of the United States submarines up on its end. You would be at the exact height of that submarine.”

Each firefighter will wear over 60 pounds of firefighting equipment as they ascend flight after flight of stairs at Canada Olympic Park. As well firefighters can participate virtually and endure the climb from anywhere in the world. 

Johnson also has a personal connection this time around to the charity he will be raising money for,

“I just had my uncle Don pass away due to stage four brain cancer in April, so for me, it's a little bit more personal. That's why I'm running this year, I'm running for my cousin who lost her father and my entire family. It's not the first time cancer hit my family and it probably won't be the last, so for anybody that has had a family member affected it's just a really good place for money to be donated.”

So far Johnson has a donation goal of $500 and is well on his way to achieving that with help from family and the community. 

With help from firefighters like Johnson, this event has raised over 100,000 dollars for Wellspring Calgary before it has even begun.

firefighters The 2019 crew that took part in the last stair climb ( photos courtesy of Cameron Johnson)


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