BINGHAMTON (WBNG) — 18 years after 9/11, firefighters throughout the Southern Tier climbed over 100 flights of stairs to finish the journey for the 343 FDNY firefighters that perished while trying to save others.
Before making their way to the top floor, firefighters rang a bell, symbolizing the firefighter they were climbing for.
“Every climber has a lanyard with a picture of one of the 343 FDNY. When they’re climbing, they’re climbing with that person and finishing those 110 flights that they didn’t get to finish,” said Chris Mallery, a firefighter and the 9/11 Stair Climb coordinator.
Firefighters participating in the event say they’re honoring one of their own.
“Something was robbed from those men that day, climbing those stairs they never got to finish. It’s our job to try and at least do some kind of honor to that, even if you can only do one flight,” said Zachary Allen, a local firefighter.
Some firefighters chose to carry all of their gear, weighing up to 80 pounds.
“It’s kind of like our duty to fulfill it,” said Zachary Allen.
Money raised at the event will benefit the National Fallen Firefighter Foundation, which works to support families who lost their loved firefighters on 9/11.