AUBURN — In its third year participating in the event, the team from Auburn Fire Department beat 40 other teams of firefighters from all over New England to place first at Boston’s 8th Annual “Fight for Air Climb” and fundraiser to benefit the American Lung Association. The event, held on Saturday, Feb. 2 in Boston, attracted nearly 1,500 entrants.

The 12-member Auburn team, named “Maine’s Bravest,” came in first place in the firefighter team division by climbing 41 flights of stairs at One Boston Place with a time of eight minutes and five seconds, besting the second place Portland Fire Department team by only four seconds. They did this in their full firefighting gear, which weighed 50 pounds.

“Although it was a challenging climb, we were proud to raise nearly $5,000 toward the more than $400,000 raised to fight lung disease,” said Dan Masselli, the team’s captain. “Of course, finishing in first place was a thrill, but for Maine’s Bravest, it was as much about supporting the American Lung Association and their good work.”

Auburn’s team is already planning on raising more money and defending their first place finish in next year’s event.

Poland Spring and Auburn Firefighters Local 797 were the team’s lead financial sponsors. The iconic water company was also the Boston Fight for Air Climb’s official water sponsor, donating 3,500 individual bottles and 35 5-gallon containers of water to the event.

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