What would you have done? When I read this story I felt a pain in my heart. I can’t know what could have been done, I have no experience in this area. Something about this story speaks of the way we can step over the people to achieve our goals. I would be very pleased to hear from others about this. See Sir Edmund Hilary’s response.
Everest climber passed dying Briton
May 23, 2006 – 12:55PM
Double-amputee New Zealand climber Mark Inglis passed a dying Briton on his way to Everest’s summit but realising nothing could be done to save him kept trekking to the top.
Inglis reached Everest’s 8,850-metre summit on May 15 and became the first double amputee to reach the peak.
He told NZ television today that about 40 climbers on their way to the top of Everest passed by the dying Briton David Sharp.
On the way up the mountain, about two and a half hours into the final climb from camp four, the Inglis party passed Sharp, who had climbed without Sherpas the previous day, on May 14.
Sharp, 34, an engineer, had climbed alone, after leaving home on March 27 to travel to Everest’s base camp. He had had apparently run out of oxygen about 300 metres below the summit, on his way down.
The Briton was outfitted by Asian Trekking, whose expedition manager, Dawa Sherpa, told NZPA.
“He had with him two 4 litre oxygen bottles. He had no Sherpa support.”
Inglis said it was very hard to go up Everest.
“It was hard … it is just so hard just to get there,” Inglis said. “I think I can understand people who really do push it, push it, push it, and then don’t get home.”
One of Inglis’ climbing companions, Wayne Alexander, of Christchurch, told the Telegraph newspaper in Britain: “We came across a chap sheltering under a rock, who was perhaps hours from death. That was probably only two and a half hours into the climb. He had made a mistake the day before. He started too late and couldn’t get off the mountain.”
Today Inglis told TVNZ’s Close-up program: “We couldn’t do anything. He had no oxygen, he had no proper gloves — things like that.”
Told that it had been suggested in New Zealand that Inglis’ party should have stopped their ascent and rescued the man, Inglis replied: “Absolutely, that’s a very fair comment.
“Trouble is, at 8,500 metres it’s extremely difficult to keep yourself alive — let alone keep anyone else alive,” he said.
“On that morning, over 40 people went past this young Briton — I was one of the first.”
In radio calls, his party was told that if the man had been there any length of time without oxygen, there was nothing that could be done for the climber.
“He was effectively dead … so we carried on,” said Inglis.
“Of those 40 people that passed this young Briton, no one helped him except for people from our expedition.”