National Fire Prevention Week this October will culminate with the National Stair Climb, an event honoring firefighters who have made the ultimate sacrifice. FDNY Fire Commissioner Daniel Nigro joined leaders from the National Fallen Firefighters Foundation (NFFF), United Technologies Corporation (UTC), Kidde Fire Safety, and loved ones of fallen firefighters to announce the event today at FDNY Firehouse Ladder 20 and Division 1 on Lafayette St. Seven members of this station died on 9/11. Previous stair climbs have focused solely on the 343 members of the FDNY who perished on 9/11. The National Stair Climb, scheduled for October 10 at Citi Field, will expand the scope of this tradition to remember all of America’s fallen firefighters, and is the first event of its kind to take place in New York City with the support of the FDNY.
“Every day, here in New York City and across the country, firefighters go into harm’s way, through every obstacle and climbing every step needed to accomplish their life-saving mission,” said FDNY Fire Commissioner Daniel A. Nigro. “The FDNY is proud to take part in this fitting tribute to every firefighter who has made the supreme sacrifice and to lend our support to the families they left behind.”
Participants will climb 2,200 steps in Citi Field. These steps symbolize the 110 stories of the World Trade Center Towers — the ascent that FDNY firefighters took on September 11, 2001 — and the ultimate sacrifice that 343 first responders made that day. It also is a journey of hope, raising funds to help programs for surviving family members of firefighters across the country. Approximately 100 firefighters die in the line of duty each year in the U.S.
“The National Stair Climb is a tremendous way to honor all firefighters from across our country who have died in the line of duty,” said Chief Ronald J. Siarnicki, executive director of the NFFF. “This climb is also a way to let the families know the legacies of their loved ones are remembered by so many.”
The first 9/11 stair climb took place in Denver in 2005 when five Colorado firefighters gathered at a high-rise to climb 110 flights of stairs in memory of their 343 FDNY brothers. In 2010, they partnered with the NFFF to hold a series of climbs around the country. The National Stair Climb is open to the public and to all ages. Proceeds will benefit the FDNY Counseling Services Unit and the NFFF.
“We are proud to partner with the FDNY and NFFF to help support the launch of this unique tradition in New York City,” said Jim Ward, president, Kidde Fire Safety, a global leader of residential fire safety products and sponsor. Kidde is a part of UTC, the climb’s presenting sponsor.
“Whenever there’s a call for help our nation’s firefighters respond without hesitation. They put their lives on the line every day. The funds raised from this climb will help ensure that survivors of the fallen will continue to receive outstanding assistance as they navigate through challenging times.”
Participants will receive a name badge honoring or in memory of the firefighter for whom they have chosen to climb and an event t-shirt. Early registration costs $35 until August 31. For more information and to register, visit www.nationalstairclimb.org.