Club 24 donation

Darla Irwin, second from right, presents a check from Club 24 to UCFD stair climb team Danny Hinton, left, Corey Gorahm and Gaige Phillips.

A simple fundraiser idea turned into a group workout challenge after Hermiston Club 24 manager Darla Irwin decided to help raise money for cancer research.

Firefighters from Umatilla County Fire District 1 are headed to Seattle on Sunday for the SCOTT Stair Climb, which gets firefighters around the country to climb 69 flights of stairs in full gear to raise money for leukemia and lymphoma research. The UCFD team has been practicing on the stair machines at Club 24.

The cause inspired Irwin, who offered to let people sponsor minutes on the stair machines for her to complete in fire-fighting gear weighing 45 pounds. She got more than she bargained for — the sponsored minutes ended up totaling more than 43 hours of exercise.

“I have a whole new respect for what our fire team does out there after spending numerous hours working off minutes,” she wrote in an email. “It is very humbling to know that’s what they do for our families and homes everyday.”

Luckily, other staff and a few club members have offered to help her work off the minutes, something Irwin said she is extremely grateful for.

The staff presented UCFD with a check on Friday for $3,655 to take to Seattle with them.

Reporter

Reporter covering city government and economic development in Hermiston, Umatilla, Stanfield and Echo.

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