Kelowna firefighters climb 110 storeys in full gear to honour 9-11 victims

Event hosted by the Kelowna Professional Firefighters Charitable Society

It’s been 18 years since the World Trade Center towers came down Sept. 11, 2001.

Today, people all over the world are commemorating the victims and first responders who lost their lives during a coordinated terrorist attack, in New York City.

In Kelowna, firefighters from across Okanagan participated in the second annual 9-11 Stair Climb at the Landmark 6 building, hosted by the Kelowna Professional Firefighters Charitable Society.

The former World Trade Center towers were 110 storeys and in order to emulate what New York City firefighters experienced that day, local firefighters climbed the 17-storey Landmark building six times.

Each firefighter who joined in this year’s stair climb donated a minimum of $20, along with wearing their fully equipped gear during their stair climbing ascent. The donations collected from Wednesday’s event in Kelowna will go towards the Wounded Warriors Canada Foundation, helping support injured first responder personnel and their families.

Glenn Paley, training officer with Kelowna Fire Department, facilitated the Landmark event with the hope it will become a fire department tradition.

“This is to honour the 343 New York firefighters who unfortunately perished on September 11, 2001,” he said. “Not to mention the 1,400-plus emergency responders that have passed since that day due to the medical problems caused by digging through the rubble.”

He said he was proud to see more than 20 firefighters from across the Okanagan participate.

“There’s not one of us here who wouldn’t have done what those firefighters did that day. You know you go to work to help the best you can and just do your job,” Paley said.

READ MORE: Why cancer is deadlier than fire for firefighters in B.C.

John Christian, a Kelowna firefighter who participated in the stair climb, said that thinking about those lost 18 years ago helped him push through the last few storeys up Landmark 6, which he described as very hot, uncomfortable and exhausting.

“It’s about remembering those people who had to climb the towers and do their job when it actually mattered,” he said.

He said 9-11 will never lose its significance for first responders.

READ MORE: West Kelowna fire fighter honored during memorial


Natalia Cuevas Huaico
Social Media Co-ordinator/ Reporter, Black Press Media
Email me at Natalia.CuevasHuaico@blackpress.ca

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

EDITORIAL: Improving highway safety

Highway 97 has seen plenty of collisions and accidents over the years

Sternwheelers once plied Okanagan Lake

Vessels once transported passengers and goods along the Okanagan Valley

Fires ignite on Revelstoke’s Mt. Begbie; Kamloops Fire Centre blazes holding

Crews working throughout region over holiday weekend to contain wildfires

VIDEO: Otter pups learn to swim at B.C. wildlife rescue facility

Watch Critter Care’s Nathan Wagstaffe help seven young otters go for their first dip

Princeton man faces charges after allegedly receiving ‘drunk driving’ lesson

The incident happened in the early morning hours of Friday, Aug. 1

VIDEO: Wildfire erupts north of Sicamous above Shuswap Lake

Observers suspect fireworks sparked blaze, Wildfire BC states cause still unknown

Canadians can travel to Hawaii in September; no quarantine with negative COVID test

Travellers will be required to pay for their own tests prior to arriving

Kelowna house and hip hop artist grows in popularity with new single

Edge’s ‘Vice City Vibes’ is available on all streaming platforms now

Alberta to require masks at schools this fall, but still no mandate in B.C.

B.C. students are also set to return to classrooms in September

Anonymous letters tell Vancouver Island family their kids are too loud

Letter said the noise of kids playing in Parksville backyard is ‘unbearable’

Police watchdog investigates Kamloops RCMP after stabbing death

The IIO is investigating the police’s lack of success in locating the man charged in stabbing

Forty-three properties near Dry Lake, along Highway 5A, under evacuation alert

Wildfire has been burning out of control north of Princeton for two days

Most Read