Firefighter who completed Auckland Marathon in full kit sore, but chuffed

Halfway through the Auckland Marathon, firefighter Simon Trye, who was running in his full kit, knew the last leg was going to be hard.

Trye, 41, is the chief fire officer at Bay of Islands Airport.

He also works part-time as a reservist firefighter for the Royal New Zealand Air Force and as a volunteer firefighter in Kerikeri.

Trye’s goal for the past three years has been completing the Auckland Marathon in his full 25kg firefighter’s uniform, complete with boots, gloves, flash hood and, for the last 4km, his cylinder.

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The conditions didn’t help Trye, as heavy rain followed racers for the whole day.

Firefighter Simon Tyre completes the Auckland Marathon in full kit.


Firefighter Simon Tyre completes the Auckland Marathon in full kit.

The uniform was waterproof to a point, he said, but after an hour he was well and truly soaked through.

Starting the race at 6am in Devonport, Trye made good time to the Harbour Bridge, where he stopped for a moment to take in the view.

But once he hit the halfway mark – covering 21.1km in three hours and 14 minutes – he knew the kilometres ahead would be hard.

The thing that kept him putting one foot in front of the other was the charity he was running for, KidsCan.

Trye was running the marathon for the charity KidsCan.

Kelly Trye/Supplied

Trye was running the marathon for the charity KidsCan.

“I probably couldn’t live with myself if I gave up just because my legs were sore.”

With 4km to go, Trye pulled on his breathing apparatus and trudged on through the rain, with the support of his wife and son, to the finish line.

It was a relief and emotional to cross the line, he said. His final time was eight hours, one minute and 39 seconds.

A day later, Trye said he was feeling pretty wrecked, his legs didn’t work as well as he wanted them to and he had bruises on his back, but otherwise, he was in a good mood.

Kelly Trye, his wife, said they didn’t know of anyone else in the world who had done a marathon in full kit and started their breathing apparatus at any point, let alone 4km out from the finish.

The point of the exercise was to raise money for KidsCan so children didn’t have to go through the day hungry, and so they could have a solid meal at school, Trye said.

He would be back at work on Tuesday – albeit a little sorer than normal.

Trye’s donation page for KidsCan can be found here.

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