submitted by the Prescott Fire Department
When he stepped on that treadmill Jan. 26, Prescott Fire Department Engineer Jason Heartisan’s purpose was twofold — set a record for the Guinness Book of World Records and raise awareness about mental health in the fire service.
He set out to run 24 hours on a treadmill — blindfolded.
Heartisan completed his running quest, logging 87.65 miles.
His desire was to bring attention and help normalize the mental health support system available within the fire service.
The local fire service community has had several suicides and attempts in the last couple of years. It’s not just a problem in the greater Prescott area; it is nationwide.
Heartisan’s goal was to run for a problem that needs to be solved and for those who have lost their race.
The real goals are to:
• Make sure firefighters know there is a support system.
• Lower the threshold of seeking help.
• Abolish any stigma associated with the mental health support system for firefighters.
Heartisan wanted to run blindfolded so others can “see.”
He uses the crowdsourcing website Spotfund (www.spotfund.com/story/26bb2c08-39b6-43c3-896b-35bd6febc91f) to raise money to help the fallen; 100% of donations go directly to the honor guard. That is the group that stands watch over the bodies of fallen firefighters before they are laid in their final resting place.
Money raised will be used by the Prescott Fire Honor Guard to support their efforts in honoring the flag and honoring those who have fallen.
“Above all, if I manage to bring home a Guinness World Record in the process, I do it for more than myself,” Heartisan said on the website link.
“I do it for anyone who has been impacted by this epidemic. So, I’m not running to break a record. I’m running to break the barriers for us all.”