The 4th annual Columbia Memorial Stair Climb was a virtual event for the first time due to concerns surrounding COVID-19.
The executive team held the opening ceremony at Rock Bridge High School while others followed along on Facebook Live.
"It’s touching," Climb Director Tommy Goran said. "It’s a little bit emotional to be honest with you just to see everyone come together for such a great cause and to see the team step up, to see the participants step up and just to see the love that we’ve had from around the country and from everybody."
After the opening ceremony, Goran and his team climbed 110 stories up and down the bleachers at Rock Bridge High School. Event Director Ryan Adams said he'll always remember this year's event.
"Climbing those stairs and completing it, completing the job that we were set out to do each year and not canceling and providing an event and an experience - especially for everybody out there - even though they cannot be there with us to complete it," Adams said.
The stair climb is held in honor of the 9/11 first responders as well as local first responders who have lost their lives in the line of duty. The event was supposed to take place at Faurot Field.
"We climb 110 stories, and the relevance behind that is because that's how tall the the World Trade Center was," Goran said. "That's how high those guys were willing to climb that day."
This year, Participants had three options in order to fulfill the climb, according to Goran. All of them could be done from the comfort of your own home or neighborhood.
- Option 1: Climb 110 Stories (2,640 steps)
- Option 2: 1.10 mile run, 110 pushups, 110 sit-ups, 110 air squats, 1.10 mile run. You can break these up any way you’d like, they do not have to be done consecutively.
- Option 3: Walk/Run 3.43 miles (343 firefighters were killed on 9/11)
Participants were encouraged to share their pictures and videos on social media to spread awareness of the event.
"It's sad that we're not altogether, but we're going to do what we have to do," Goran said.