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Because it’s there

Friday, 29 May, 2015

On this day in 1953, New Zealand mountaineer Edmund Hillary and Nepalese Sherpa Tenzing Norgay made the first confirmed ascent of Mount Everest. They spent 15 minutes on the summit, with Norgay leaving chocolates in the snow and Hillary leaving a cross. Together, they had climbed the world’s greatest mountain.

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“Why did you want to climb Mount Everest?” is the question asked of George Leigh Mallory by a New York Times reporter in March 1923. “Because it’s there,” was his reply. Mallory made his third and final attempts to climb Ever­est in 1924 and was last seen on the way to the summit along with his companion Andrew Irvine. Mallory’s frozen body was found by climbers on the mountain’s north ridge in 1999.

Note: More than 9,000 people were killed and 21,000 injured in the 25 April earthquake that struck Nepal. Among the dead were 22 Mount Everest climbers. One of the many charities active in Nepal is Medecins Sans Frontieres, also known as Doctors Without Borders, which is sending medical staff and supplies to the Himalayan region.


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