Firefighter makes her mark
Step by step, Jess Anderson made her mark as an invaluable member of the Titahi Bay Volunteer Fire Brigade.
The 22-year-old was one of the brigade’s youngest members in the gruelling Auckland Sky Tower Challenge in May.
Anderson climbed 1103 steps while wearing 25 kilograms of gear to raise $3012 for Leukaemia & Blood Cancer New Zealand. In total, the Titahi Bay brigade raised $6657.
‘‘It’s a really important cause. Because of what I do for a job and what I study, you see how [cancer] affects people’s lives,’’ Anderson said.
‘‘I lost my cousin [Ken Cook] two years ago to cancer, so I was doing it in memory of him, too. His wife was waiting for me at the top.’’
The paramedic student, who has been volunteering for the fire service for 10 months, said she was pleased with her achievement for her first time in the event.
‘‘It was hard work alright,’’ she said and spoke of doing more training next time.
Anderson was one of 750 firefighters nationwide who took part this year.
‘‘I had a couple of goals. One was to make it to the top. I will definitely be doing it again next year.’’
Her target was to raise $2000. She said it was great to know her friends and family were behind her.
‘‘It was huge to be part of some- thing like this.’’
The nationwide fundraising target was $750,000, and $1,018,091 has so far been raised.
Anderson said she did have a day off after the climb, and was back into her studies later in the week.
‘‘I was pretty exhausted, not just from the climb but the adrenaline on the day.’’
Titahi Bay Fire Brigade placed 31st nationwide.
Tawa Volunteer Fire Brigade also placed in the top 50 and raised $1000.
From left, Liam Paul, Jess Anderson and Rachael Woodhouse from Titahi Bay Fire Station competed in the Sky Tower Challenge in May, supporting leukaemia and blood cancer research.