Stepping Up for a Cause

<p>Firefighter Bob Clark</p>

Firefighter Bob Clark

Firefighters Andy Babcock and Bob Clark gear up in their casual firefighting gear.

However, they aren't responding to an emergency, in fact, they'll be in Seattle trucking up 800 vertical feet of stairs in a few weeks.

It's part of the Scott Frefighter Stair Climb.

"It's my fifth year and what really drives me to keep on doing it is seeing our team get together and enjoy it, get the comraderie in our team," said Babcock.

Babcock isn't the only one preparing for the climb.

Firefighters throughout our area are preparing, using any means necessary.

"We have a stairwell that I climb pretty religiously, but nothing really prepares you, it's just kind of grit and determination," said Richland firefighter Adam Hardgrove, "And remembering why you're doing it, that's going to push me the most."

The firefighter stair climb is one of the largest stair climbing events in the world -- over 1,800 firefighters are expected to haul their gear 69 flights of stairs all for charity.

The money teams raise through sponsors will go towards the Leukemia and Lymphoma Society.

Last year, over one million dollars was raised -- and teams want to reach that mark once again.

But for most firefighters, the stair climb means much more than a good time -- it's a message for those battling cancer.

"It's just one of those things, it's there, you just want to tackle it," said Clark, "You figure, if people go out, and they can beat cancer, this is nothing compared to what a lot of our friends and family members have to go through."

"Whether someone's going through a rough financial time, whether someone's sick, whether someone's injured, what ever it is we need to be there to let them know 'hey, you're not going through this alone, we're here to pick you up, we're not going to let you go through it [alone]. we're going to pick you up and we're here for you," said Hardgrove.