“On the 16th of May 2019, I stood on top of Everest. I embarked on this journey to reach the seven summits in 2012, the seven highest summits in the world and so far I have done four. It was not just for a personal quest but it was something I embarked on an effort to educate the African child.” – Saray Khumalo
At the Peak
According to Times Live in the “fleeting moment” that Saray finally summited Everest, she felt cold, struggled to think, but also knew she was “on top of the world and that nothing is impossible”. Making your way to the top is a pretty impressive feat but every climber knows that the adventure doesn’t stop there. At the top, Khumalo realized she still had to descend, the most dangerous part of the climb.
“Suddenly you realise Noel’s voice at back of mind that the summit is only halfway to getting there.”
Who is this Noel you ask? Well, Noel Hanna was Saray’s exhibition leader from Ireland. He has summited Everest nine times and was there with her every step of the way.
The Hero’s Welcome and Thanksgiving
On Monday morning Saray arrived at OR Tambo International Airport with a warm welcome awaiting her celebration of arrival.
In Memory Of
I encourage everyone to continue making the most of their time they have because life is short. I pray that when we die, we die doing what we love and making a difference,” she said.
Summit Your Own Everest
If there’s one thing we can treasure from Saray, it’s her heart for making the impossible, possible and encouraging others to do so too. Saray told reporters: “Not only is my family and my tribe, who are my friends… behind me, I am so excited and proud that the entire nation is behind me.”
One of the things that drove Khumalo was her fundraising. She has previously raised more than R1m for the Nelson Mandela Foundation for school libraries. For this journey, she raised money to aid orphans in finishing university through the Dr Thandi Ndlovu Foundation.