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Sunday, May 21, 2017

Hemophilia History Made: Everest Summit!

Mountaineer Chris Bombardier
He did it! History made!  Chris Bombardier, the young man from Denver, Colorado with hemophilia B, around 10 pm last night became the first person in history with hemophilia to summit Mt. Everest! Everest alone is an incredible challenge due to the high altitude, which kicks in on the nine-day trek to base camp at about 10,000 feet. Everest is 29,029 ft. Chris has hemophilia, and faces prolonged bleeding from injuries. He uses an extended half-life product, which will help increase the length of time factor circulates in his blood. So many have asked how he is protecting himself: factor, prophylaxis, oxygen tanks, and great sherpas to help guide him. It takes a special kind of person to dream of this, train for this, and take on this. And he is doing this not just for personal best record or even to make history, but to shine a spotlight on the huge disparity in care between hemophilia treatment in countries like the US and in countries like Nepal.

Read from his blog, Adventures of a Hemophiliac. What does a guy with hemophilia think and feel before undertaking a history-making adventure?
Infusing on a rock!

TUESDAY May 16

I finished my last infusion at base camp and tomorrow morning our team will begin our summit push. I'm not exactly sure how to describe the feelings I am currently having. I'm excited, nervous, scared and hopeful all at the same time. I know the next week of my life will be incredibly hard, full of moments of questioning my sanity and of overwhelming joy. I'll be able to witness some of the most amazing views on this planet and also be more exhausted than I have ever been.

Through the hard moments and the amazing moments I know that I have a family that is supporting me no matter what. My beautiful and strong wife, my incredible parents, aunts, uncles and friends will be with me ever step of the way. I also know that I have my bleeding disorder family from all over the globe cheering me on and that makes me feel strong.

As I pack my gear and put my boots on in the morning and walk into the [Khumbu] icefall with only the light of my headlamp showing the way, I'll think about how fortunate I am to be able to choose this life and this adventure. Choose to try and push myself farther than I could ever dream and step on the top of the world. I'll also think about all my blood brothers and sisters that aren't able to have that choice.... yet. I'll remember that by standing on the summit and by raising awareness about hemophilia and disparity in care, we can change that.

The hope is that we can summit on May 22. While I am challenging myself on the mountain I want to challenge all of you. We already met the goal of finding sponsors for every child on the Save One Life, Inc. website. 55 kids have now been sponsored since I began this adventure! Let's not stop there!

The climbers promoting Save One Life
I would love to see the fundraising page for my Everest climb reach $8,848, the amount of meters above sea level the summit reaches. I won't know if we've reached that goal until two days after the summit and I reach basecamp but that would be icing on the cake. Those funds will help those with hemophilia in Nepal continue to rebuild after the earthquake. It will help them climb their own personal "Everest" and work towards living the lives they choose. I would also urge you to reach out to Save One Life and put your name on the waiting list to sponsor a child. There will be more children added soon and they all could use our help.

Thank you all for the support and hopefully in few days no one will be able to say someone with hemophilia can't climb Everest. 
Navigating the Khumbu icefall: first steps to Everest

And thanks to Octapharma for sponsoring Chris’s historic climb!


Visit our Gallery to see the trek to base camp!
Visit our Gallery to see our visit to Nepal’s hemophilia families
Read more about our Nepal trip here!

“Climbing, simply and joyfully, is the way I love the world.” Steph Davis, High Infactuation: A Climber's Guide to Love and Gravity

2 comments :

vinay nair said...

Hats off to him....motivating all over the world that hemophiliac can reach the top most height of success...Lovely described Laurie and once again congratulation to all hemophiliacs on this success made by Chris....From Vinay Nair India

Rupal XL said...

Its Great to see one of our blood brothers achieving a remarkable achievement. It also demonstrates that we have been able to challenge the disease with Sciences,innovation and technology. Let us hope that the remarkable progress in medicine becomes available to every person with Hemophilia.Let us toast that each hemophiliac reaches his full potential in his life and set examples for everyone. Best Regards Rupal Panchal (Severe Hemophiliac) INDIA

 
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