NEW ORLEANS – July 4, 2013 – Seventy-five New Orleans residents gathered to participate in a Fourth of July boot camp in dedication to The Arizona Firemen Fundraiser held outside of the New Orleans Museum of Art in City Park.

Complete with a team of professional personal trainers dressed in festive red, white and blue; four select Firemen from Engine 35 and a lively group of New Orleans’ most fitness-conscious congregated on a sweltering Thursday morning to burpee, plank, pushup, and crunch in honor of the 19 Arizona firemen who risked their lives to protect others.

The smell of sweat and wet grass hung in the air while motivating chants resounded throughout the park. Nineteen one-minute exercises completed with 100 percent dedication and commitment by each participant. Each exercise was devoted to one of the 19 courageous fallen firemen.

RJ Rice, owner of The Parks Health and Fitness, decided to organize and host the event, in conjunction with French Rivera Fitness, when he read some of the firemen had children on the way.

“It struck a cord with me.”  Rice said. “You know, I have two kids of my own, little young guys, and we are expecting another one. I just thought about my wife and my family, and how much they would need support.”

Donations were encouraged in an effort to raise funds for the families who lost fathers and husbands. Those who could not participate still had an opportunity to donate through PayPal or check by mail.

Despite the heat and heavy humidity, participants finished all 19 exercises with a unified clap-and-roar encore. Videos and pictures of the event can be found on The Parks Health and Fitness Facebook page.

L E A R N +  C O N N E C T
To donate, go to PayPal accounts or, or mail a check to French Rivera Fitness, 3908 Veterans Memorial Blvd Metairie, LA, 70002.

F R O M   T H E   E D I T O R
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