Northamptonshire mountaineer who almost died in Everest avalanche pays thanks to life-saving guide

Tony, Sukman and Ellis
Tony, Sukman and Ellis

An Everest climber from Northamptonshire is fulfilling a promise he made to the Sherpa who saved his life when the camp he stayed in was destroyed by an avalanche.

Tony McMurray of Towcester set out to reach the Everest Base Camp to raise money for the Alzheimer’s Society on the morning of April 25, 2015 before the 7.8 magnitude earthquake, killed 9,000 people and injured more than 22,000.

Tony McMurray

Tony McMurray

Tony and his team had to rely on the skill and courage of local lead Sherpa, Sukman, who did not know if his own family members were alive further down the mountain.

On leaving Nepal in May 2015 Tony made a promise to his Sherpa, Sukman that he would one day help him visit the UK.

He said: "When I last saw Sukman in May 2015, I promised I would bring him to the UK on a visit to meet my family and friends so they could personally thank him for bringing me down the mountain alive.

“I have had to provide a number of personal documents in order to support Sukman’s stay in the UK, and all is now set for an emotional week of reunions and lots of sight-seeing for him.

"I am sponsoring his week-long visit to the UK and have a week of trips to London planned and some other sites our country has to offer."

Tony's friend, Ellis, was further up the mountain when the quake struck and the trio were reunited four days after the devastation in 'an emotional reunion'.

Tony's wife Sharon waited 30 agonising hours to discover whether her husband was alive.

She said: “I am looking forward to meeting the man we now call ‘superman’ Sukman."

Sukman’s one-week stay will start with a special ‘Evening with Tony, Ellis and Sukman’, which is scheduled to start at 6pm on Sunday, June, 4 at the Saracens Head Hotel in Towcester.

All three intrepid explorers will appear on stage in front of more than 70 people and each will tell of their own unique journies to Everest in 2015, as well as what it was like to experience a quake on the highest mountain on earth.

Sukman will also explain how fundraising work is helping to rebuild his own village, which was destroyed in the avalanche.

Tickets cost £15 and there will be cheese and port included in the price. Those wishing to purchase tickets can do so via Sharon McMurray on 07792189022. Alternatively, Tony can be contacted directly on 07702 662098.

Ellis will also be on hand to sign his recently published book, ‘Everest it’s not about the Summit’, with all profits on the night - including book sales - going towards helping rebuild Nepal.