ST. LOUIS – Hundreds of people climbed the steps at Metropolitan Square for a great cause Saturday. The event was put on by the American Lung Association

As volunteers cheered them on, participants in the “Fight For Air Climb” prepared to climb 42 floors up the Metropolitan Square building.

This fundraiser happened for the first time since the COVID-19 pandemic. Hundreds of climbers of all fitness levels braved the challenge.

One of those was Sheryl Leonard Schneck.

“I actually am an Ironman Triathlete, so this is my interval training, and I’ve done three climbs this year,” she said.

“I love type two fun. Type two fun is where you hate it while you’re doing it, but you look back on it fondly,” said Jill Paha.

The goal is to raise awareness and research funding for lung disease.

“My mother-in-law passed from lung cancer, so my husband and I come and do these climbs in her memory as well,” said Leonard Schneck.

The Lung Association says more than 857,000 people in Missouri suffer from lung disease. 

“I climb in memory of some family members, some cousins and some grandparents that have passed from lung cancer. Donating back to a cause that can help,” said another participant.

Funds raised from the event will support the Lung Association’s efforts to improve lung health right here in Missouri through research, education and advocacy.