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Tuesday, 1 May, 2001, 12:19 GMT 13:19 UK
Tributes to Nepal's Everest hero
Mount Everest
Babu Chhiri broke several Everest records
Thousands of people in Nepal have paid their last respects to the Everest climber, Babu Chhiri Sherpa, who died in an accident on the world's highest mountain two days ago.


Nepal has lost one of its great sons.

Prime Minister Girija Prasad Koirala
The 35-year-old mountaineer was killed after falling 200 metres into a snow crevasse during his latest climb up Everest.

Babu Chhiri, whose body was airlifted to Kathmandu, is to be cremated on Thursday in accordance with Sherpa tradition.

Long lines of mourners formed the route to the community centre where his body has been laid to rest.

Shock

His death has sent shock waves across the country.

The Nepal Mountaineering Association said Nepal had lost a shining star.

Babu Chhiri
Babu Chhiri: Died after falling into crevasse
Prime Minister Girija Prasad Koirala said he was deeply saddened.

"It is a great loss to the country. Nepal has lost one of its great sons," he said.

More than 160 people have died attempting to climb Mount Everest.

If Babu Chhiri had succeeded in reaching the top, he would have equalled the record of 11 climbs held by another Nepali Sherpa, Appa.

Last year, Babu Chhiri broke another record - becoming the fastest Everest climber by racing to the top in less than 17 hours.

He also entered the Guinness Book of Records for the longest stay at the top of Everest, when he spent 21 hours without oxygen two years ago.

He leaves behind a wife and six daughters.

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See also:

31 Mar 00 | South Asia
Sherpa's race to the top
02 Feb 00 | South Asia
Everest's 'new height' disputed
12 Nov 99 | South Asia
Mount Everest reaches new heights
25 Oct 99 | South Asia
Legendary sherpa gives up mountains
25 May 99 | South Asia
Mallory's Everest climb disputed
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