DENVER (KDVR) — Each year, hundreds climb stairs to the top of the Republic Plaza building in downtown Denver, raising money for the American Lung Association.
If you’re afraid of heights, you can always donate from the comfort of your couch.
The “Fight for Air Climb” is aptly named, with participants climbing 56 stories and 1,098 steps to the top floor.
Each year, there are inspirational stories involving people who never thought they’d be able to pull it off.
This year, Marco Pino-Yancovic is attempting the climb, despite the severe asthma he’s battled since childhood.
“It never occurred to me that I would go and climb 50 stories up,” he said. “It’s a challenge, but I think that I’m ready for it.”
Pino-Yancovic has been using a StairMaster and climbing stairs at local parks for the past few months.
He says it’s important to prove those with lung disease can still fight through adversity.
“It’s a matter of putting your mind into it, and just go do it,” he said.
He credits advancements in research and science with letting him live a better life as an adult. These days, he uses an inhaler once a day.
“I don’t have to carry my emergency inhaler anymore like I did when I was growing up,” he said.
The American Lung Association is hoping to raise $260,000 for research through the event.
As of Saturday night, they had raised nearly $200,000.