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  Father files suit again Mt. Everest Expedition for son's death


Mike Matthews on the summit of Everest

Michael Matthews, age 22, of London, England, lost his life on May 13, 1999, while descending to Camp 4 from the summit of Mt. Everest.  Mike was wearing a red Northface Himalayan down suit. There as black trim on the shoulders and knees, and he would have been wearing a Russian oxygen system with perhaps a "UK" or American bottle (UK or American bottle is about twice as large as the orange Russian bottles) and was a grey-blue color.  His boots were black One-Sport boots with yellow trim.  His ice axe was a silver color and was made of metal.  Mike was the youngest climber to ever reach the Summit of Everest from the UK at the time. There is no doubt Mike reached the Summit.

The above is part of what we published per the requests of the family and expedition with the hope that other climbers would see Mike's body on Everest in later years. Despite the requests and investigations, Mike's body has never been found to our knowledge.

Mike's father, David Matthews, has now according to wire reports filed a lawsuit against the guiding company, OTT Expeditions. David has made his feelings pretty widely known. Matthews apparently has also suit against Henry Todd, who supplied the oxygen for the Everest expedition; Jon Tinker, one of the 4 guides on the OTT expedition that year, who went home early on the expedition due to illness; and Mike Smith the guide who was last with Mike Matthews. Mr Matthews believes the guides let Mike down that day on Everest. Mike Smith was of course Russ Brice's roommate and friend for several years. Mike has not, to our knowledge, guided 8000 meter peaks since Mike Matthews' death. Henry Todd, of course, has run numerous expeditions to Everest.  OTT Expeditions, went out of business and became Alpine. They apparently continued to run expeditions to Everest using others guides and apparently providing logistics for others including some very famous guides for a few years after Mike' death. 8000 guiding is a small world.

Jon Tinker disappeared from the 8000 scene and apparently had numerous personal problems after Mike's death. Apparently Mike Matthews was OTT first client who died on Everest. The company, at the time, had several succesful summits of Everest.

EverestNews.com released the News on May 15th 1999 with a statement from the OTT Expedition and the Matthews' family.

Daily News: 5/15/99 Report 12:35 PM EST

  • Everest Takes another life:

The following release has been made by the Matthews family and OTT Expeditions to EverestNews.com.

"Michael Matthews, aged 22, was lost presumed dead whilst descending from the summit of Mount Everest on the afternoon of 13th May 1999.

Although he never held it as an ambition he was the youngest Briton to reach the summit of Everest.

He was a keen mountaineer who had successfully climbed Mount Aconcagua in Argentina in January of this year and whose previous climbing experience included the Swiss Alps, the Pyrenees and Kilimanjaro in Kenya. He wanted to follow Everest with an attempt on Mount Vincent.

Michael was educated at Uppingham School. He worked as an equity options trader in the City of London.

He leaves behind his parents, David and Jane, his two brothers, James (23) and Spencer (10) and his married sister, Nina Mackie, all of whom are quite inconsolable over the loss of Michael Robert Matthews (4th March 1977- 13th May 1999.)

Michael had been climbing with OTT Expeditions. The family wish to thank members of the Team for their courage and determination shown on the descent in Atrocious weather conditions."

It is sad... Sad for all involved. Now it appears the courts will decide more... More climbers will die on Everest, the Question is not if, but who and how many will die? Experienced climbers, some considered great, will die climbing 8000 meter peaks along with some climbers considered clients. This is very high risk sport where people die every year...  If anyone tells you different, RUN!

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