Firefighters set lofty goals for stair climb

By John Leggett-The Courier-Herald

After finishing a close second to the Seattle Fire Department in last year's annual Scott Firefighter Stairclimb Fundraiser for The Leukemia and Lymphoma Society in 2006, the Buckley Fire Department is out to reclaim its title, but their team needs the public's help to achieve this.

This year's event is going to be held exactly a month after Super Bowl XLI, on March 4. For the hard-working Buckley firefighters though, this competition, which they train for year-round, overshadows even the Super Bowl in its magnitude and importance.

This is the 16th running of the event, which grows in popularity every year and features the firefighters actually gearing up, complete with bunkers, helmets and masks (about 50 pounds of extra weight) and taking the stairs up every one of the 69 stories of Seattle's Columbia Tower.

“While this event is a physical challenge for the firefighters, it's nothing like the challenge of fighting cancer,” said Alan Predmore, Buckley fire chief, who climbed the tower twice last year and says he will accomplish the feat again, - but only if he is forced to by receiving multiple donations, daring him to try it again.

No one will put a gun to Predmore's head to make this happen, but he says that if just 35 people will donate $100 or more to the cause, he will brave the arduous ascent stair-by-stair......twice, again this year.

All proceeds from this event will benefit the L&L Society in its mission to cure leukemia, lymphoma, Hodgkin's disease and myeloma and improve the quality of life for patients and their families.

Donations are 100 percent tax deductible and can be either handed directly to Predmore, mailed to him at 43111 268th Ave. S.E., Enumclaw, 98022, or easier yet done via e-mail at or Any questions regarding donations should be directed to the Buckley Fire Station at 360-829-1441.

John Leggett can be reached at

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