January 12, 2008

The NZ History web team have compiled this profile of Sir Edmund Hillary who died yesterday. I recommend you copy and paste this link to your browser to view. ==>

http://www.nzhistory.net.nz/culture/edmund-hillary

Hillary was the first man to climb Mt Everest, the world's highest mountain. He also travelled to the South Pole and travelled the Ganges River. He was the New Zealand High Commissioner to India and was the only living New Zealander to have his face on a monetary note (the $5 dollar kiwi) for 15 years. His humanitarian work in Nepal is well respected. He built 30 schools, several hospitals and bridges...

"The work of Hillary’s Himalayan Trust, established in 1964, would become his greatest contribution to the region he loved. Over the next 30 years, with the help of hundreds of enthusiastic volunteers from New Zealand and other countries, the Trust would build more than a dozen schools, two airfields, two hospitals and several medical clinics, as well as repairing monasteries, replacing bridges, installing water pipelines and undertaking numerous other projects. These efforts helped earn Hillary the title ‘Burra Sahib’ (‘Big in Heart’) among the Sherpa people."

He is being accorded a state funeral which will be televised here and will lie in state probably at the Auckland War Memorial Museum on the 22nd, also in the Anglican Cathedral... He died in Remuera, Auckland New Zealand aged 88 and is survived by his children and his second wife, June. RIP.

For further in depth info see also Christchurch libraries profile and catalogue of sources:
http://library.christchurch.org.nz/Heritage/People/HillaryEdmund/

or Hastings Central Library for research shortcuts on this topic:
http://www.hastingsdc.govt.nz/libraries/featureEverest.htm

Or try this update from a nepal based blogger, www.nepalnow.blogspot.com...:
"Hillary schools are a beacon of efficiency and offer one of the highest standards of mass education in Nepal. The Sherpa people--most people in the Khumbu--are among the most prosperous in Nepal due to the efforts of Sir Ed's Himalayan Trust. Whenever you are in Kathmandu, give a visit to their offices in Dilli Bazaar...and leave a donation. The money will not be wasted. If you can't do that, look up or mail a donation, on Sir Ed's behalf to:


Himalayan Trust
P.O. Box 224
Kathmandu, Nepal


email: himalaya@trust.mos.com.np


There is a photographic memoir to Hillarys life, era and experiences available to view at the Auckland Museum link I regularly link to, which celebrates Edmund Hillary's contribution in many fields in my list of favourites at the right. I would expect this to only grow over time.

Here is the Link to New Zealand Prime Minister, Helen Clarks Eulogy at Edmund Hillary's State Funeral. Nice to see this site where speeches are archived.

http://www.beehive.govt.nz/speech/eulogy+sir+edmund+hillary

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