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Friday, May 30, 2008

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Anniversary of the first ascent of Mount Everest


Today (May 29) is the 55th anniversary of the historic ascent of the world’s highest peak, Mount Everest. On this day in 1953, Sir Edmund Hillary of New Zealand and a Nepali Tenzing Norgay Sherpa scaled the Sagarmatha (8,850 metres) for the first time.

Gold and silver coins featuring late Hillary against a backdrop of Mount Everest were released in New Zealand today to mark the 55th anniversary of his historic ascent of Mount Everest.

According to the New Zealand Post, which issued the commemorative coins, part of the proceeds of their sale would go to the Himalayan Trust that Hillary established for the Sherpa people of Nepal. Hillary, the first living New Zealander to be featured on a bank note, died in January, aged 89, while Tenzing passed away in 1986.
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