WHAT’S BEING CLAIMED:
- An American man, who had the dream of climbing the tallest mountain on each continent, died Wednesday while descending from the summit of Mount Everest, his seventh and final summit.
- Don Cash from Sandy, Utah was a seasoned climber who had left his job to join the “Seven Summits Club.”
- The 55-year-old’s son Tanner told NBC’s Today show that the last message his dad sent to him was, “I’m so blessed to be on the mountain I have read about for 40 years!”
Donald Lynn Cash from Sandy, Utah, who was able to achieve his lifelong dream of reaching the summit of Mount Everest on Wednesday., collapsed and died during his descent.
Cash’s family said the mountaineer apparently died of a heart attack. However, his body is not recoverable.
The 55-year-old’s son Tanner told NBC’s Today show that the last message his dad sent to him was, “I’m so blessed to be on the mountain I have read about for 40 years!”
Cash fell from the top of the summit Wednesday morning, as per The Himalayan Times, and was brought below the famous Hillary Step on the south side of the mountain by his Nepalist climbing guides. He was administered oxygen, but died later in the afternoon.
Reportedly, efforts to carry his body below the Hillary Step was delayed by a traffic jam of other climbers trying to reach the summit. Approximately 250 and 300 mountaineers were attempting to reach the Mount Everest summit on Wednesday, The New York Times reported.
“There’s a long queue of climbers above Camp IV,” Gyanendra Shrestha, a liaison officer at the Everest base camp, told The Himalayan Times. “Everyone seems in a hurry to reach the summit point when the weather is clear.”
Cash paid with his life in achieving his goal of climbing the highest summits on all seven continents.
“I am truly blessed to be able to take the next 5 months off on a sabbatical to finish the last 2 remaining mountains on my Seven Summits Club dream,” Cash indicated on his LinkedIn page. “Mt. Vinson-Masiff in Antarctica Jan 7-26th, 2019 and then Mt. Everest in Nepal April/May 2019. I’m excited to look for the next chapter of my career in June when I return. Safely. With all my digits.”
“I think there’s just so much peace that comes from knowing that he didn’t suffer,” Cash’s daughter Brandalin told the Today show. “That it was the best way to go.”
Cash becomes the 12th mountaineer to die on Himalayan mountains above 25,000 feet in the spring climbing season, according to The Himalayan Times.