Matthew Robinson spends his work week helping crunch numbers for Regions Bank in Tyler.
“It was fun,” he said, wiping his forehead. “That hose is a lot heavier than it looks.”
Robinson was among a host of local professionals who spent a wild morning playing fireman in the parking lot of Broadway Square Mall, vying to glory before a cheering crowd of supporters.
Other corporate teams competing for glory included the City of Tyler, East Texas Medical Center-EMS, Tyler Morning Telegraph and XTC Fitness & Sports.
In the mix were Tyler City Manager Mark McDaniel and Tyler Morning Telegraph publisher Nelson Clyde, two Fit City fitness rivals competing for bragging rights.
By day’s end, a clear winner emerged.
And it wasn’t the newspaper.
The city walked away with the best time: one minute, 57 seconds, compared to the newspaper’s 2:14.
Losers of the city-versus-newspaper challenge are expected to perform some extra community service deeds for three worthy organizations: working 10 hours at the East Texas Food Bank; serving 10 hours at Meals On Wheels and giving five pints of blood to Carter BloodCare.
“We look forward to completing our community service hours,” he said.
There was no gloating from McDaniel, who said he’s already scheming about the next competition.
“It was a good run,” he said. “A lot of people didn’t have the courage to even participate. These guys (firefighters) are amazing athletes and their ability to carry all that weight is just amazing.”