March 3, 2015
Student's name finishes off the dead lift. Culver photo/Jan Garrison

Will Nicholson ’16 finishes off the dead lift. Culver photo/Jan Garrison

Everyone has heard the weight training maxim “No pain, no gain.”

But the phrase took on a different meaning Feb. 27 when four Culver Academies students hosted the first Lift-A-Thon to raise funds for the Lone Survivor Foundation. Thirty-seven students, faculty, and staff members signed up to participate in a weight training competition that involved three basic lifts: the bench press, squat, and dead lift.

The competition was the brainchild of seniors Katie Salerni (Coronado, Calif.) and Muriel Weathers (Galveston, Texas) and first-classmen Jesse Brownfield (Columbus, Ind.) and Nick Mahalak (Monroe, Mich.). Used as their senior service project, they sold T-shirts and accepted donations on the behalf of the Lone Survivor Foundation.

The foundation was established by Marcus Luttrell, the former Navy SEAL whose New York Times best-selling book became a top-grossing movie. The foundation helps wounded service members and their families heal together as they work through the consequences of war.

Brownfield said the four like to lift weights and they knew that no one had done this kind of competition. In order to make it fair for everyone, each person weighed in and the totals they lifted were graded on scale. That way, he added, a 104-pound girl could compete against a 204-pound boy. Weathers was the person he credited with the system.

Several people were lifting some impressive weights, Brownfield added. First-classman Trey Budreau (Fowler, Ind.) benched 305 pounds and squatted 405 pounds to top those two categories.

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