To Honor 9/11 Victims, Jim Czupil Hosts Memorial Event
August 29, 2019
Jim and his wife, Dianne, invested in the Gold’s Gym opportunity eight years ago. Today, they are the proud owners of the Camp Hill and Linglestown, Pennsylvania Gold’s Gym locations. Every day, members come in and out of their gym. A few years ago, a fireman walked into their Linglestown location on September 11th asking to honor our fallen.
“You don’t mind if I walk 110 flights?” he asked. He humbly brought his heavy fireman’s equipment and an oxygen tank into the gym and proceeded to climb 110 flights of stairs on a stair climber.
Jim and Dianne were so impacted by the fireman’s gesture, they made it their personal mission to “never forget” the victims, survivors, families and first responders from the September 11th attacks. The following year, Jim and Dianne decided to continue to honor first responders and victims on 9/11. This quickly became a trend getting picked up by other Gold’s Gym franchises and corporate locations.
Now, Jim and Dianne’s goal is to get to the point where on 9/11, every stair climber is reserved all day long for the firemen and policemen to come in.
Gold’s Gym: Focused on the Community
“We are a community-oriented club,” explained Jim. As 9/11 approaches, our focus shifts to honoring first responders, not only those who served at Ground Zero but local first responders as well.
Even before a bill passed in July to provide benefits for victims, survivors, first responders, and families of the 9/11 attacks for another 70 years from the September 11th Victim Compensation Fund, Jim and Dianne were already asking themselves how they could contribute to the cause financially. “We want to get out on social media and link to the 9/11 fund and make it a bigger deal,” he says.
Jim and Dianne want to get more firefighters and first responders into the club and onto the stair climber, but they also want to raise funds to support first responders. “We do Wounded Warriors Boot Camp. We’re going to do the same thing where people can rent time on the stair climber for a fee.” People will sign up for 15-minute slots where they can support the 9/11 initiative, he explained.
“We’re trying to get slots filled up all day long with firemen or members of our club who have rented time slots and are making contributions to the time slots.”
Supporting Great Causes
Jim says the funds raised at his gyms will either go to support the 9/11 Victim Compensation Fund, their local firefighters, police officers, or all three – he’s still finalizing the details. Locally, the first responders “are really being pinched right now with budgets and cutbacks, so every little bit helps there,” says Jim.
Every September as 9/11 approaches, Jim, Dianne, and their daughter, who is the general manager at the Camp Hill location, ask themselves how they can make the gyms’ 9/11 cause better. “Every year, we try to make it better and make a bigger impact. We plan on doing this as long as we’re in this business,” says Jim.
“Every month, we’re doing something,” says Jim. We support a variety of causes throughout the year including breast cancer awareness campaigns, helping the Humane Society, a backpack drive for the school year and other worthy causes.
For those joining the Gold’s Gym family because of its high potential for community engagement, Jim says, “The first thing to do is make a public commitment that you’re a community-based club and that giving back is important.”