Irishman, 26, conquers Everest

A LIMERICK man has become the youngest Irishman to climb Mount Everest.

Mark Quinn, 26, reached the summit yesterday morning. He was climbing in aid of The Shane Geoghegan Trust, a trust set up after rugby player Shane Geoghegan was murdered in a case of mistaken identity in Limerick in November 2008.

13-year-old American Jordan Romero made history when he became the youngest person in the world to summit Everest two years ago. Before this weekend, the youngest Irish person to summit Everest was Cork woman Samantha Carroll, who reached the summit in 2004, aged 28.

Mr Quinn has been an active charity fundraiser since leaving school and his efforts have seen him jump from a plane at 10,000 feet and run a full marathon.

He said his latest idea was inspired by a number of things, not least the immortal words of George Leigh Mallory who, on being asked by a reporter in 1923 why he so desired to climb Mount Everest, replied: “Because it is there.”

Before heading to Everest, Mark told the Irish Examiner that the current economic crisis had made him even more determined to help children at risk in Limerick.

“These programmes target young people who may find themselves involved in criminal behaviour and offer them an alternative path.

“In a time of deep budget cuts that will do untold harm to future generations, organisations like the Geoghegan Trust are not just creating a future for young people otherwise forgotten about, they are actively saving lives and changing the social structure of Limerick city and I’m hoping to raise a lot of money to help them,” Mr Quinn said.

The first Irishman to summit Everest was Pat Falvey in 1993.

The Shane Geoghegan Trust is a Limerick-based charity which raises funds for youth programmes and offers young people an alternative to crime.

To support Mark’s Everest bid, an account has been opened in Ulster Bank, O’Connell St Limerick; account number 10041826, sort code number 98-60-20

* www.highaltitudeireland.org

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