Father and son climb stairs at fire training tower, 20 times, for National Fallen Firefighter Foundation
ALBION – A father and son from Kendall climbed the stairs at the Orleans County Fire Training Tower 20 times today.
Doug Jones Sr., 62, and his son Justin, 23, trekked nearly 2,000 steps on the stairs, going 48 steps up and then 48 down and did it 20 times. That is about how many steps firefighters climbed in the World Trade Center towers on Sept. 11, 2001.
The previous two years, Doug and Justin did the stair climb at Frontier Field in Rochester with about 150 other firefighters in the region for the annual National Fallen Firefighter Foundation. But the event was cancelled at the stadium in Rochester. The NFFF urged participants to continue to raise money for the cause, and look for an alternative location as part of a virtual climb.
The two picked the fire training tower on West Countyhouse Road in Albion.
Jones Sr. said he is motivated to take on the challenge, despite a gimpy knee, as a memorial to the firefighters who died in 2001. There were 343 firefighters who were killed on Sept. 11, 2001 during the terrorist attacks in New York City.
That year, a Kendall firefighter also was killed in the line of duty. Rick Buongiorne was 48 when he died on Jan. 9, 2001. He was directing traffic around a single-vehicle collision when he was struck by a truck.
Jones was the fire chief in Kendall that year. He said he thinks often of Buongiorne and the NYC firefighters who died that year. They are his motivation in the annual stair climb.
“There is a strong brotherhood in fire department,” Jones said.
His son recently relocated to Connecticut and works for a pest control company. Justin came home to do the stair climb with his father, who works in the warehouse for Associated Brands in Medina.
For more information about the climb and to donate through Doug Jones Sr.’s fundraising page, click here.