VICTORIA Bridge native Kieran McClintock is set to tackle the highest mountain in the world this coming September in memory of his late brother, who was a keen hill walker himself.
In just a few weeks time Kieran will journey to Nepal to begin his ascent of Mount Everest, and will climb over 17,000ft to reach Base Camp.
Although a very tough physical and mental challenge it is something Kieran feels compelled to do in memory of his brother, Gerard.
Gerard passed away in April 2017 after suffering for many years with an alcohol addiction. Through his trek Kieran hopes to raise awareness and funds for two important services that helped Gerard throughout his addiction journey, Aware NI and the Northlands Addiction Treatment Centre in Derry.
The McClintock family have held several memorial walks for Gerard since his passing, including climbing Muckish mountain and Mount Errigal, but this latest challenge will be the biggest test yet.
Kieran will be joined on the 14 day trek by two of Gerard’s friends from the Strabane Ramblers walking club, Leo Doherty and Lorraine O’Donnell.
The trio have done a lot of training, including a substantial amount of hill walking, in preparation for the big climb.
“We were also advised to do yoga and pilates so we have been doing a lot of that to make sure we’re ready,” said Kieran.
“I am actually really looking forward to it.”
Documenting the entire hike, Kieran will be posting a daily blog on his Facebook page, Kieran’s trek, to keep everyone up to date with his journey which begins on September 20.
So far Kieran has raised over £7,000 for the two charities, and all the money donated will go directly to them.
“I want to say a huge thank you to everyone who sponsored the trip and all those who have helped me along the way,” said Kieran. “I would also like to say a special thank you to my wife Jackie for all her support over the years.”
* If you would like to donate to Kieran’s cause you can visit the crowdfunding page at justgiving.com/fundraising/kieran-mcclintock.