NEW YORK, May 19, 2016 /PRNewswire/ -- At 9:22AM PDT, The Heroes Project announced that USMC Staff Sergeant Charlie Linville (age 30) became the first combat wounded veteran to summit Mount Everest. For the Boise native and father of two, this caps a 3-year journey for the below-the-knee amputee to stand at the world's highest point.
The team is healthy and safe and currently descending the mountain. They will furnish photos from the summit once the team arrives at Advanced Base Camp.
In 2013, despite over a year of attempts at rehabilitation, he made the decision lose his right foot to an amputation below the knee. During that period, Linville joined The Heroes Project, a 501(c)3 under the leadership of Tim Medvetz and support from founding partners Equinox and Chrome Hearts. The grass roots veterans' organization is based in Hollywood, CA and leads mountaineering expeditions with gravely wounded veterans and active service members, enabling them to rediscover their strength and pride by scaling the world's most challenging summits.
Medvetz led the "Operation Everest: 2016" expedition opting to take the team up the North Face of Everest and with today's summit, The Heroes Project team is the first to summit Mount Everest's North Face during the 2016 season.. In addition to Linville, the team included videographer Kazuya Hiraide, producer Ed Wardle and "Climb Alaya," a team of Sherpas Medvetz has previously climbed with.
The summit marks Linville's third attempt to summit Mount Everest with The Heroes Project. In 2014, the team was at Lobuche Peak (20,000 feet) nearby Everest Base Camp when then they decided to cancel their efforts to honor the 18-sherpas who lost their life in the avalanche. Last year they were once again on the mountain and turned their attention to the recovery efforts throughout Nepal to help those most affected by the 7.8 earthquake that took the lives of thousands and caused mass devastation throughout the region.
The team arrived at Everest Basecamp on April 17th, and encountered delays from a snowstorm before arriving at Advanced Basecamp (ABC) on May 2nd. Once at ABC, the team focused on acclimation training to get their bodies adjusted to the conditions at 21,300 feet. They left ABC to begin their climb earlier this week and began their summit push in the late evening on Wednesday, May 18th.
Training for this year's attempt began in the latter part of 2015, before ramping up their program into the New Year. The duo worked with Equinox on a training program where they would train anywhere from four to six hours per day. As part of their training program, Equinox created a specialized altitude deprivation chamber which allowed them to cycle for 2-hours a day at a simulated altitude of 17,000 feet. During the final 2-months of training, Linville and Medvetz slept inside a Hypoxico Chamber, which simulated the altitude and oxygen levels at 18,000 feet. Linville and Medvetz underwent a grueling, 24/7 training protocol to prepare for their summit.
About USMC SSgt. Charles Linville
A graduate of Boise High School, USMC SSgt. Charles Linville joined the Marines where he volunteered to be an Explosive Ordinance Disposal Technician in Afghanistan. His job consisted of diffusing as many as 40-bombs on a daily basis. On January 20, 2011, while conducting an IED sweep in Helmand Province, Afghanistan, USMC Staff Sergeant Charlie Linville was blasted several yards into the air by a tertiary explosive device. By the time he landed in the blast crater, he had suffered devastating injuries to his right foot and hand.
As a result, he was sent to Bob Wilson Naval Hospital (Balboa Hospital) where he began a full year of rehabilitation that included 12 re-constructive surgeries stemming from his injuries. It was during this time that he met Medvetz and the two formed a bond, each drawing inspiration from one another.
When SSgt. Linville made the life-altering decision to say goodbye to his right foot, thus becoming a below the knee amputee, Medvetz found himself in awe of his courage. Having summited Mount Everest in 2007, Medvetz knew that Linville had the conviction to take on the world's biggest mountain and The Heroes Project had found the man to be the first combat wounded veteran to summit Everest.
About The Heroes Project
The Heroes Project is a Los Angeles based non-profit organization 3(EIN: 27-1288926), created by former Hell's Angel biker, Tim Medvetz, and leads mountaineering expeditions with gravely wounded veterans, enabling them to rediscover their strength and pride by scaling the world's most challenging summits. In taking on the world's biggest mountains, the challenges these soldiers and marines face mirror the mental, physical and emotional challenges it takes to overcome losing limbs in battle, allowing the healing process to begin as they adjust to their post-war lives. Medvetz and The Heroes Project have already taken wounded veterans and active service members to six of the world's seven biggest summits.
For more information about The Heroes Project, please visit www.theheroesproject.org
Equinox operates 80 upscale, full-service clubs in New York, Chicago, Los Angeles, San Francisco, Miami, Boston, Texas and Washington, DC, as well as international locations in London and Toronto. The company offers an integrated selection of Equinox-branded programs, services and products, including strength and cardio training, studio classes, personal training, spa services and products, apparel and food/juice bars. Since its inception in 1991, Equinox has developed a lifestyle brand that represents service, value, quality, expertise, innovation, attention to detail, market leadership and results.
IT'S NOT FITNESS. IT'S LIFE.
The Heroes Project (EIN: 27-1288926)
Stan Rosenfield & Associates
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