Great Falls firefighters participating in stairclimb fundraiser again this March

A team of Great Falls firefighters are prepping to ascend 69 flights in full turnout gear once again.

J.D. Kulbeck, Adam Jordan, Carter Marsh, Steven Tucker and BJay Perry are training to participate in the 27th Scott Firefighter Stairclimb on March 11 to support the Leukemia and Lymphoma Society.

This will be Kulbeck’s 10th year climbing the 1,356 steps at the Columbia Center in downtown Seattle in full turnout gear.

It’s Jordan’s first time participating in the climb.

He had a friend with leukemia who is now in remission and Jordan said the foundation had helped her. He’ll be climbing in her honor.

The team is climbing in honor of fellow Great Falls firefighter Jason Baker who was diagnosed with stage four lung cancer.

Kulbeck has set a $7,000 fundraising goal this year and estimated that over the last decade, he’s raised about $27,000 for LLS.

Since 2010, Great Falls firefighters have raised $77,730 for LLS.

“It has been great to see how giving the community of Great Falls, as well as our family friends, and the department have been over the years,” Kulbeck said.

The money raised for the stairclimb supports blood cancer research and patient services, according to LLS.

Last year, the event featured 2,000 firefighters from more than 330 different departments and nine different countries. They raised $2.4 million.

The firefighters use a stairclimber machine to train as well as the stairwell at the city’s north parking garage, where they can climb steps in full gear.

The team is holding a pint night Feb. 24 at the Hi Ho Tavern to raise money. They’re also running a raffle for AR-15 or $800 Scheels gift card. The winning ticket will be pulled at the Hi Ho event. Tickets are $20 each and only 200 will be sold.

Kulbeck said his initial goal was to participate in the climb for 10 years. But now his wife thinks it would be great for their young son to see him climb. Their son is 1, so Kulbeck said he might be climbing for a few more years.

“It’s a fun event, it really is,” he said. “It’s good to get in shape and compete against other teams for a good cause.”

Want to learn more or donate to the Great Falls firefighters? Click here and the firefighters are listed. You can donate to the team as a whole, but each of the firefighters have to raise at least $300 and team donations don’t count toward their individual totals, Kulbeck said.