A Sherpa guide in Nepal was killed while fixing lines on Everest this past Sunday, April 7, according to the Associated Press. Mingma Sherpa fell into a crevasse above Camp One and perished. A helicopter is being sent to camp to retrieve his body.
The Sherpas have a long history as the local guides to foreign climbers looking to scale the world’s tallest peak. They are frequently charged with setting up ropes from base to summit that climbers then jumar up for the South Col route.
The risks Sherpas take each year have spurred efforts by some to ensure greater safety for Sherpa guides on the mountain and greater opportunities for the Sherpa people off the mountain. The Khumbu Climbing Center, supported by the Alex Lowe Charitable Foundation, provides key climbing and safety training to Sherpa guides. Alpine Ascents International also started the Sherpa Education Fund, which helps pay for Sherpa children to receive an education.