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Japanese climber who lost 9 fingers dies on 8th attempt at Everest

53 Comments
By Prakash Mathema

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RIP, I for one would like to think that he died attempting to fulfill his dream.

13 ( +16 / -3 )

Sometimes you have to let nature take its course. His choice to keep going after it, even after losing the fingers.

7 ( +8 / -1 )

Terrible news. RIP. He went out the way he wanted, doing what he lived for.

2 ( +5 / -3 )

Whilst I admire his courage and determination, it was irresponsible to allow him to attempt the climb. Lord know it’s difficult enough for a fit and able bodied climber.

RIP SIR!

6 ( +11 / -5 )

Very sad news.

0 ( +2 / -2 )

Much respect. He died doing what he loved. Most of us won't be so lucky.

4 ( +5 / -1 )

Whilst I admire his courage and determination, it was irresponsible to allow him to attempt the climb.

How so? There have been numerous other climbers who have attempted and successfully climbed Mt Everest with far more debilitating handicaps.

How many people do you know that would even have thought of fulfilling their dream let alone attempt it after what he had been through?

Hell, in my book he is a hero, for overcoming what would have stopped most people, and fighting on!

0 ( +5 / -5 )

Volenti non fit iniuria.

1 ( +1 / -0 )

Very sad that he couldn't accomplish his goal in the end, but it really seems like plain bad luck.

In the end he lived and died doing what he loved and that's more than most people can say.

A life well spent.

0 ( +1 / -1 )

"Died doing what he loved"

Good for him. But in doing so, he left behind his grieving parents, and other family members and friends. Sorry to say, but him dying up there was not a 'freak accident' or an unavoidable fate... In my opinion it was somewhat selfish to keep trying when all indications are that you arent supposed to achieve this goal.

4 ( +11 / -7 )

RIP, he died doing what he loved.

1 ( +3 / -2 )

@Yubaru

You need fingers for rope work mate. He had only one!

Not only did he put himself at risk but others, who probably attempted to rescue him from his fate.

For the record. I'm ex military and police. I know many lads who have attempted astonishing achievements.

Still, as you say, he died doing what he loved. That's the way I'd like to go. You too I guess.

3 ( +4 / -1 )

Good for him. But in doing so, he left behind his grieving parents, and other family members and friends. Sorry to say, but him dying up there was not a 'freak accident' or an unavoidable fate... In my opinion it was somewhat selfish to keep trying when all indications are that you arent supposed to achieve this goal.

Fortunately, we all have the right to be selfish in this life, if it is not hurting others.

Not only did he put himself at risk but others, who probably attempted to rescue him from his fate.

It's Mt. Everest - that's what people do there.

-1 ( +1 / -2 )

Adventurous climbers would die up there someday. He probably knew it. Most of any kinda adventurers died there on the way or back.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

Lost 9 fingers in 8 climbs and still continued climbing. What a set of balls this guy had. rip

1 ( +2 / -1 )

Maybe they can scatter some ashes at the peak.

-1 ( +0 / -1 )

When your hobby turns into an obsession.

3 ( +3 / -0 )

As the Roman jurist Ulpian wrote, this is a clear case of Nulla iniuria est, quæ in volentem fiat.

-1 ( +0 / -1 )

If he had no family, no friends, no one to care that he is dead, then fine - he's a hero, he's got balls, he went out doing what he loved, good for him, etc., etc., etc.

BUT he leaves behind a father, Toshio, who has worried and fretted every time his son has made another attempt to do something that was palpably beyond him. When he lost nine fingers to frostbite, his father was happy - because his son was still alive.

As a parent, I see the actions of this young man as self-centred, selfish, cruel - the height of 親不孝. I'm very sorry he's dead. But I feel more sorry for his poor father, who has been put through years of worry and anguish, and who now, instead of bouncing grandchildren on his lap, must plan a funeral. I hope never to walk in Toshio's shoes.

-2 ( +8 / -10 )

My gut tells me he kept going up knowing one day he might not come down & got his wish

4 ( +5 / -1 )

Like many, he died doing a challenge that eventually cost him his life. Not alone on that one. Many dangerous sports, like F1 racing, American motorsports. Round the world lone yachts people who go out but sometimes never come back. Simple pursuits like rock climbing, hanger gliding, free fall jumps. The list is very long.

Sad for the surviving family and father but how happy would the father have been if he forced him to remain at home knowing he had real passions.

You can get killed just walking around to the bus stop.

Arunima Sinha (was born in 1988) was the first Female amputee to climb Mount Everest.

A double amputee, Xia Goyu reached the peak last month.

http://time.com/5272120/nepal-everest-xia-boyu-summit/

We are challenged very single day.

3 ( +5 / -2 )

He was what I call " a doer ", not a watcher. I regard him as an inspiration. If he was a member of my family, I would grieve, but also be very proud.

2 ( +4 / -2 )

Is he a hero because he died? I think the word hero is wrong. I think something on the order of a man with passion. RIP

0 ( +0 / -0 )

Mr Kuriki's attempts in autumn, solo, and without oxygen (both things that your average 'pay $60,000 to be dragged up the mountain by the Sherpas' would never, ever dream of attempting) made him somewhat of a legend in climbing circles.

He went out on his own terms, doing something he loved. I find it quite inspirational. Yes, he'd lost his fingers to frostbite, but a climber named Mark Inglis lost his legs to frostbite, and he summited in 2006, if I recall correctly. For Kuriki to believe that he could make it also was well within the realms of possibility.

RIP.

0 ( +2 / -2 )

I've always wondered if you could just take a Helicopter trip there and drop down onto the Summit ?

I guess for most that would take the fun part out of the ordeal.

1 ( +1 / -0 )

Kuriki was actually a bit of a media creation in that his ticket to fame was an invented backstory of him being a NEET, basically a young wastrel with no direction in his life, and hikikomori, who then took up climbing to find a purpose. Thanks to this story and his heavy use of social media, live blogging from mountains etc., he became virally popular and seen as an inspiration to other people who completely bought into it and would sit watching him on Facebook and write messages of support. All the time he was being managed by media people. He was with Yoshimoto from 2011.

It is sad that he has died, of course, but there was more to him than his public image presented. I find anyone falsely claiming to be ex-hikikomori for popularity points distasteful. You can climb mountains without resorting to that.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

mmwkdw

As far as I know, one helicopter has ever landed on the summit, and that was back in 2005. If you were to step out of one, directly onto the summit, you'd probably be dead within minutes because the oxygen level at 30,000 feet is 1/3rd of that at sea level. Unless of course there is some special equipment that I know nothing about. That's very possible.

There is a reason climbers spend weeks or months on the mountain acclimatising by rotating up and down through the high camps.

3 ( +3 / -0 )

@RiskyMosaic - what ? you mean I couldn't just step out in my brithday suite and do a jig on top of M. Everest then fly off again ?

;D

-3 ( +0 / -3 )

Mr Kuriki's attempts in autumn, solo, and without oxygen (both things that your average 'pay $60,000 to be dragged up the mountain by the Sherpas' would never, ever dream of attempting) made him somewhat of a legend in climbing circles.

I've read that other climbers called him out for lying about not using oxygen tanks and claiming he climbed by himself while the Sherpas where clearly doing all the work. He was also warned numerous times that he doesn't have the proper knowledge or training to climb.

I don't know much about climbing, but I do know that several Sherpas and a cameraman died at this guy's expense, so I really can't feel anything for him.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

I've always wondered if you could just take a Helicopter trip there and drop down onto the Summit 

Helicopters can't fly that high.

5 ( +6 / -1 )

As a parent, I see the actions of this young man as self-centred, selfish, cruel - the height of 親不孝. I'm very sorry he's dead. But I feel more sorry for his poor father, who has been put through years of worry and anguish, and who now, instead of bouncing grandchildren on his lap, must plan a funeral. I hope never to walk in Toshio's shoes.

Never forget that all of the people who have accomplished amazing feats in their life times, all had parents, loved one's and others that probably worried about their children.

If we all felt the way you did here, and our children actually listened, NOTHING would ever have been accomplished!

-2 ( +1 / -3 )

Doing it once is one thing. Dying for it is totally stupid. Putting people at risk is indeed stupid.

6 ( +7 / -1 )

RIP. He lived for what he loved. I can only respect his will to keep climbing after loosing his fingers.

My ex-company actually did support his Cho Oyu climb in 2007. I do not know why but he had quite a lot of support and sponsors since a long time ago.

But he had a lot of failed attempts and was not seen as a really powerful climber by his pairs. Lack of strength certainly or of some kind of decision making. Climbers with strength and abilities do succeed on a mountain after about 3 tries. If not, they go away from that mountain for a while, do not stick to it. He tried 8 times the Everest, without succeeding, and this climb was certainly turning into an obsession to achieve the Seven Summits.

Anyway, easy to say from my chair. I dream I could climb some Himalaya summits too.

-3 ( +0 / -3 )

Yubaru - With all due respect, I disagree. There's plenty that can be accomplished without needlessly putting your life at risk.

There is a world of difference between a parent worrying because their kid is away on a twelve-month exchange program in forn parts as part of their education, and a parent worrying because their kid is deliberately putting themselves (and others) in harm's way just to be able to say 'I did that'.

Whether Kuriki made it to the top of Everest or not, how is it an 'achievement' ? It makes no one's life any better, it adds nothing to the global wealth of human knowledge, it saves not a single life and if therougou is correct, his obsession took the lives of others.

We can accomplish a lot without risking life and limb and sending our parents grey.

Dead at 36. That's no accomplishment.

7 ( +11 / -4 )

As much as I admire amputees for getting on with there lives, I wonder now if the local government will put in place various restrictions so that this can't happen again.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

Call that obsessed....... like the ones on lone islands after a serious war

2 ( +2 / -0 )

therougou

I've read that other climbers called him out for lying about not using oxygen tanks and claiming he climbed by himself while the Sherpas where clearly doing all the work.

several Sherpas and a cameraman died at this guy's expense

I haven't seen anything about that but I'll take your word for it as you haven't provided any links. I did read respected Everest chronicler Alan Arnette's blog entry questioning the word 'solo' though. Arnette says he prefers the term 'alone'.

mmwkdw

You could. You'd have to hold your breath though!

0 ( +0 / -0 )

If we all felt the way you did here, and our children actually listened, NOTHING would ever have been accomplished!

At best he was going to accomplish something that 400 people have already done since the climbing season began this year.

8 ( +8 / -0 )

Whether Kuriki made it to the top of Everest or not, how is it an 'achievement' ? It makes no one's life any better, it adds nothing to the global wealth of human knowledge, it saves not a single life and if therougou is correct, his obsession took the lives of others.

Strongly agree.

You can admire his conviction or willpower, if you like, but a hero is someone who helps others, or at the very least contributes something to society.

I'm not denying anyone the right to chase selfish, wildly irresponsible dreams, but I don't see why people glorify it when someone dies doing that.

6 ( +7 / -1 )

If you read the amazing Everest book "Into Thin Air" it makes it clear how dangerous the climb is. The most talented, experienced climbers have died trying.

There's also luck involved.

The book is a warning: don't try it.

5 ( +5 / -0 )

Captain Robert Falcon Scott, CVO, RN was a British Royal Navy officer and explorer who led two expeditions to the Antarctic regions: the Discovery Expedition and the ill-fated Terra Nova Expedition.

Born: June 6, 1868, Plymouth, United Kingdom

Died: March 29, 1912, Ross Ice Shelf, Antarctic

2 ( +2 / -0 )

Terrible news. RIP. He went out the way he wanted, doing what he lived for. unfortunately freezing to death alone on a mountain that refused to let it him conquer it is not my idea of going out doing what you love. . He should given up after losing his fingers, skydiving , white water rafting many other sports can give you the rush you desire and most likely far less risky

1 ( +1 / -0 )

Helicopters can't fly that high.

actually there have been a few helicopter that have flown over Everest and one even hovered on the summit for almost 4 minutes

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=2jr8g-BP1y0

0 ( +1 / -1 )

What a set of balls this guy had. rip

ouch!

But yes RIP.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

He died doing what he loved. He knew the risks. RIP

-1 ( +0 / -1 )

As a parent, I see the actions of this young man as self-centred, selfish, cruel

Cleo, I get your point, and as a parent, I take that attitude myself at times. But at those times it is probably me that is being selfish. To feel grief by your children's actions is a small price to pay for the joy they bring us.

Whether Kuriki made it to the top of Everest or not, how is it an 'achievement' ?

I think only he can answer that.

-1 ( +0 / -1 )

Nothing but I call it Craze of playing with death.

-1 ( +0 / -1 )

We can accomplish a lot without risking life and limb and sending our parents grey. Dead at 36. That's no accomplishment.

You know nothing about his life and the thousands of people he inspired, to make a crass comment like this! How old are you? 60? 70? What have you accomplished that has inspired others to get up and into action?

He was an extremely popular speaker with ES and JHS students, and when he wasnt out scaling the mountains of the world, he was teaching children about hiking and climbing safety, and led countless numbers of treks into the mountains here in Japan.

He was also well know for his commentary while climbing and live video feeds too, people saw the top of the world on different continents through his eyes

https://www.facebook.com/kurikiyama/

No normal person would not be amazed by what he has shared with the world!

-2 ( +0 / -2 )

The average person, myself included, does not know enough about climbing to know how good Kuriki actually was or how respected he was by other climbers. It is very easy to believe whatever the media says about him. As I pointed out above, his media image was created and includes a fake backstory.

Doing three hundred sit-ups a day might be irrelevant or counter-productive, but if you wheel a sportsman out in front of a load of school kids and say, "Look! He does three hundred sit ups a day!" I'm sure they would be impressed. If people find tales of mountain climbing inspirational, there are plenty of other people out there with them. They mightn't be promoted on Facebook or on speed dial and bookable through Yoshimoto Entertainment, but that doesn't matter, does it?

3 ( +3 / -0 )

You know nothing about his life

I know that he's dead. At 36. And that he wouldn't be dead, and would likely have all his fingers, if he hadn't been obsessed with climbing mountains out of season and without the necessary equipment and support.

How old are you? 60? 70?

And still alive. I attended the funerals of both my parents, and didn't burden them with having to attend mine.

*he was teaching children about hiking and *climbing safety

He doesn't seem to have given much thought to his own climbing safety.

2 ( +2 / -0 )

Compare to to some others, indeed safety was not promoted.

You can do more impressive and even riskier WITH risk management.

Check one example out of many : https://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/Alain_Robert

0 ( +0 / -0 )

I know that he's dead. At 36. And that he wouldn't be dead, and would likely have all his fingers, if he hadn't been obsessed with climbing mountains out of season and without the necessary equipment and support.

You dont know that for a fact either. Maybe if he had chosen a different path in life he would have been hit by a car and lived his live in a coma, or worse died from it.

And dont believe for a second that you never gave your parents sleepless nights or that they constantly worried about you.

I can not understand how anyone would begrudge a person the life that they choose, and must be influenced by ensuring their parents never worry. HIS parents were proud of him, and of course are saddened by his passing, but they were proud of their son.

I guess outliving one's parents should be the goal in life for everyone in your world right?

0 ( +0 / -0 )

Maybe if he had chosen a different path in life he would have been hit by a car

If he had the same obsession with danger and made a habit of jumping out in front of speeding vehicles, yes he well might.

And dont believe for a second that you never gave your parents sleepless nights

I'm under no illusions. I know I gave them plenty of cause to worry, just as my kids gave/give me. But I never deliberately gave them cause to literally fear for my life.

I can not understand how anyone would begrudge a person the life that they choose

I don't begrudge him. I just don't go with all this 'he died attempting to follow his dream', 'he went out the way he wanted' stuff. And I'm saying that one, I don't think he had courage he had an obsession and two, I feel sorry for his father. He may have been proud of his son but he certainly wasn't happy about his antics.

http://rockandice.com/climbing-news/seventh-times-the-charm-kuriki-poised-for-everest-summit/

His father, Toshio, hardly knew what to make of this. Kuriki’s mother had died a few years earlier, leaving him to fret about his son’s altitude ambitions alone. At first Toshio tried the silent treatment, but soon broke down. As Kuriki boarded a flight to Denali in 2004, his cell phone chirped. “I trust in you,” his father announced, then hung up. .... More or less resigned, he’s still prone to affectionate outbursts, even when Kuriki is safe at sea level. “I am not going to lose you!” Toshio often blurts out, loud enough to convince himself.

I guess outliving one's parents should be the goal in life for everyone

It's the start, not the goal.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

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