Member of Edmund Hillary’s team, he climbed Everest twice
Nawang Gombu, the first person to scale the Mount Everest twice, died at his residence in Darjeeling on Sunday after a brief illness. He was 75.india Updated: Apr 25, 2011 00:24 IST
Nawang Gombu, the first person to scale the Mount Everest twice, died at his residence in Darjeeling on Sunday after a brief illness. He was 75.
Family sources said the famed mountaineer was suffering from gastroenteritis and passed away at 8.45pm. He is survived by his wife, four daughters and a son. His funeral will be held on Thursday.
Gombu was the youngest member of Sir Edmund Hillary’s climbing team that first scaled the world’s highest peak in 1953. He was only 17 then.
However, he managed to make it to the top only 10 years later, in 1963, while guiding an American team.
Two years later, he did it again, this time while guiding members of the Indian Everest Expedition.
Besides the Everest, the Sherpa mountaineer also scaled other peaks and for his accomplishments, he received several medals and honours.
Born on May 1, 1936, Gombu was the son of a former Tibetan monk, Nawang Gyaltzen, and a former nun, Lhamu Kipa. While some relatives claim that he was born in Khumjung in Nepal, others say he was born in southern Tibet.
Gombu had been associated with the Himalayan Mountaineering Institute for the past 45 years and trained more than 25,000 mountaineers.
“My last wish is to write a book on my mountaineering experiences,” Gombu had told Hindustan Times in a recent interview. That wish, to encapsulate his experiences in the form of a book, remained unfulfilled.