Singaporean climbs Mt Everest against all odds; Here's a throwback at Republic's historic endeavour

Climbers die while descending Mount Everest
Light illuminates Mount Everest during sunset Reuters

A Singaporean climber proved that failure is a key to success as he defeated freezing conditions and extreme exhaustion to conquer the tallest mountain in the world, Mount Everest on Wednesday, May 22.

In 2017, the 29-year-old Jeremy Tong was just 150 minutes away from the Mount Everest but the signs of frostbite forced the climber to withdraw from his mission.

Two years later, he again decided to fight all the odds and convert the failure into a success, but this time, he faced a different challenge - a human traffic jam while climbing the mountain that caused a snaking queue of other climbers in their final push to reach the top.

He told the Channel NewsAsia that while struggling in a long line for a couple of hours all the way to the summit, "I was like wow, that is a lot of people."

Two months ago, Tong, who is the father of a new-born son, left Singapore for this adventurous event.

As per Tong, last time while climbing the Everest in 2017 he could see many dead bodies on the way and understood how dangerous it is. It should be noted that as of now, almost 10 climbers had died, which is the highest toll since 2012. Many climbers got stuck because of bottlenecks on narrow trails at high altitude and that is very dangerous for the climbers.

Tong said that the news about other climber's death affected him since he knew some of them personally and climbed with them. However, he clarified that he made this climb for charity and raised almost $11,000 so far for the Children's Cancer Foundation.

Jeremy Tong
Jeremy Tong Facebook

Singapore Mount Everest Expedition:

In 1995 a major improvement took place after the then President, Ong Teng Cheong, agreed to be the Expedition Patron. The team started training with some members undertaking smaller trips to places like Mount Kinabalu and the Alps, where peaks like Mount Cook were climbed. Planning began in earnest to organise a whole-team expedition to climb a part of the 7000-metre Nun-Kun peaks in Ladakh, India.

As per the website of Singapore Everest Expedition, during the first expedition in 1998, the team received messages from all over the world and then Singapore Prime Minister, Goh Chok Tong, also wrote a letter that was read out via a satellite telephone from Singapore.

Singaporean mountaineer David Lim, on behalf of the Mountaineering Society, applied and secured a permit from the Nepal Government for the climbing of Everest for the spring season 1998.

The 54-year-old Khoo Swee Chiow climbed the Mount Everest as a member of Singapore's first Mount Everest expedition in 1998. He is also the first South-East Asian and the fourth person in the world to complete the Explorers Grand Slam, that is, the South Pole, the North Pole and the Seven Summits.