“You do encounter dead people…and they can’t be moved or removed because of the nature of the terrain.”
“It was horrible. It was the worst thing I’ve seen in my life.”
“The minute that you die, you stop being flesh and blood and you become part of the mountain. You adhere to the frozen rock.”
Yes. People often pass other dying people on Everest without offering them assistance. The idea is that the dying person is too forgone to help. So, they pass on and continue their summit attempt without offering any form of assistance to the dying person whatsoever.
This video tells the controversial story of David Sharp. David was a British mountaineer who became decapacitated on his way down from the summit of Mt Everest on May 15th, 2006.
David was found frozen, still attached to the fixed line, unresponsive, frostbitten, but still alive. He was passed by over 30 climbers on the morning of May 15th, 2006. None of the 30+ climbers stopped to help David on their way up the mountain. 9 hours later, on their way down, several climbers stopped to attempt to revive him. Sherpa Dawa spent over an hour attempting to get David onto his feet. It was too late for David. He was left where we lay and the climbers continued down to life leaving David there with death.
“…Dawa from Arun Treks also gave oxygen to David and tried to help him move, repeatedly, for perhaps an hour. But he could not get David to stand alone or even stand resting on his shoulders, and crying, Dawa had to leave him too. Even with two Sherpas it was not going to be possible to get David down the tricky sections below…” – Jamie McGuinness, Everest guide
Sir Edmund Hillary, the first man to summit Mt Everest, was disgusted by the David Sharp incident:
“I think the whole attitude towards climbing Mount Everest has become rather horrifying. The people just want to get to the top. It was wrong if there was a man suffering altitude problems and was huddled under a rock, just to lift your hat, say good morning and pass on by.” – Edmund Hillary
“They don’t give a damn for anybody else who may be in distress and it doesn’t impress me at all that they leave someone lying under a rock to die.”- Edmund Hillary
“I think that their priority was to get to the top and the welfare of one of the… of a member of an expedition was very secondary.”- Edmund Hillary
– Was climbing solo
– He had no sherpa nor guide nor radio nor rescue potential
– Attempted to climb Everest 3 times
– Summited Cho Oyu (6th tallest peak on Earth at 26,906)
– Mathematics teacher from England
– Learn more about David Sharp: David Sharp
I’ll ask you again:
WOULD YOU PASS A DYING HUMAN ON MOUNT EVEREST WITHOUT HELPING?
The cover image of that post was the famous body of “Green Boots” and it caught many peoples attention. Green Boots perished on the most deadly year on Mt Everest: 1996. He is still there.