Some 43 years after being stopped 500 feet short of the summit on Mount Everest and ultimately losing both of his feet due to frostbite, Chinese climber Xia Boyu finally summited the world’s tallest mountain on Monday.
In doing so, Boyu becomes the second double amputee in history to summit Mount Everest – and the first to do so from the Nepalese side.
Roughly 43 years ago, Xia Boyu made his first attempt to scale Mount Everest. He didn't summit, and he lost his feet to frostbite.
On Monday, he finally achieved his dream. https://t.co/4hSuA5ueL3
— NPR (@NPR) May 14, 2018
Now in his late 60’s, Boyu held onto his dream of summiting Mount Everest after later losing both of his legs above the knee to lymphoma after the Everest attempt in 1975.
According to BBC, “After the disastrous 1975 climb, he made three more attempts, in 2014, 2015 and 2016. The 2016 attempt brought him close to the summit before a blizzard set in.”
And then last year, Nepalese authorities attempted to ban double amputees, blind and solo climbers from attempting any mountains within its borders unless they obtained a doctor’s written permission. According to NPR, the “rules were tossed just months later by Nepal’s high court for discriminating against people with disabilities.”
Boyu wasted no time in giving another attempt in 2018 once the rules were scrapped.
“Climbing Mount Everest is my dream,” Boyu told AFP news agency in April. “I have to realize it. It also represents a personal challenge, a challenge of fate.”
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