Blesma member Hari Budha-Magar is due to conquer his childhood dream of summiting Mount Everest…
Hari, who will be the first double above-knee amputee to attempt the climb, had set a date in Spring 2018 to climb Mount Everest with his team. However, in December the unfortunate news broke that the Nepalese tourism ministry ruled that double amputees and blind people are to be banned from attempting to summit Everest to try and reduce the number of deaths on the mountain.
Hari, who has been preparing for this monumental feat with five years of climbing training, has had specialist prosthetics made which secure his stability and had planned to be accompanied by the ‘Conquering Dreams’ team, an expert team of friends, including Royal Gurkha, U.S. Marine Corps and Navy SEAL veterans Krishna, Christopher, Dustin and Mingma, who have come together to help Hari become the first person with bilateral, above knee amputations to summit Mount Everest.
Since losing his legs in an IED blast in Afghanistan whilst serving with the Royal Gurkha Rifles, Hari has put his body to the test by pushing the boundaries of his ability and what he can do physically with no legs. He even relearnt multiple sporting activities including skydiving, skiing, kayaking and rock-climbing, but his dream of climbing the world’s highest mountain always remained in his mind.
Hari said: “When I was a child, I could see mountains from my village in Nepal and always knew one day I wanted to climb Mount Everest. After I was injured I wondered how I could climb a mountain without any legs? After I tried every sport and realised anything is possible.”
Ian Waller, Operations Director at Blesma, said: “We know that Hari is highly capable and more prepared than many of the hundreds of inexperienced climbers that attempt this feat each year and fail.
“The ban unfortunately further perpetuates the myth that disabled people cannot achieve their ambitions or in Hari’s case childhood dream. We think it’s a terrible shame that Hari and other double amputees and blind people are to be excluded from realising their ambitions and goals in this way.
“Hari remains determined to go ahead with his climb and is currently in Nepal training. We at Blesma having supported limbless veterans since WWI to feel empowered and to live independent and fulfilling lives, would love to see Hari be able to achieve his dream.
“It’s important to Hari to be an inspiration to other disabled veteran and civilians worldwide, and to raise money for associated charities.”