Daredevil 68-year-old Malaysian climber aims to conquer Everest

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KUALA LUMPUR, March 3 — Like the Marvel Comics character ‘Daredevil’, James Lee is a man without fear.

He has lofty ambitions. He is always geared towards reaching for the skies. In reality, that’s an understatement.

The man has scaled 56 mountains to date, including Mount Fuji in Japan and Mount Rinjani in Indonesia, apart from climbing Mount Kinabalu for a total of 16 times.

Lee now wants to conquer Mount Everest in the Himalayas, which at 29,000 feet high is the world’s highest mountain.

This intrepid mountaineer is 68 years of age!

To Lee, age is just a number and scaling mountains is like life, full of challenges and risks.

Lee will begin his quest on March 30, together with two other climbers, Sherine Leong, 40, and Desmond Lee, 56, on the expedition which is expected to end in early May.

All three are members of the Lions Clubs International District 308B1 Malaysia and will embark on their Mount Everest Expedition (MEE) sponsored by the Archipelago Life Insurance Ltd and VKA Financial Group, a financial planning firm.

“Everything that we do daily has its challenges and risks. Climbing a mountain is not a race, but it must be done in stages and with caution.

“Age is no obstacle for challenging oneself to succeed, but it is all up to one’s determination and discipline to prove one’s capabilities.

“Climbing Mount Everest demands a lot of discipline, determination and continuous training,” Lee, who first started climbing mountains in 1990 at 42 years of age, told a press conference on the expedition here today. Despite his experience in climbing mountains, he and his co-climbers put in a lot of work preparing themselves for the quest, training daily at the gymnasium, swimming and running between five to 20km each day.

Lee said physical training was crucial to prepare oneself for the climb which would take more than two months to reach the peak.

“We have to make sure our body is resilient. My previous experience in mountain climbing has helped me prepare for this.”

On her part, Leong has climbed Mount Annapurna in Nepal in April 2015, as well as several mountains in Malaysia, while Desmond scaled Mount Kinabalu in 2000. — Bernama