Discovery Channel has canceled a Mount Everest jump after a tragedy that killed at least 13 people. The network announced on Sunday, April 20, "In light of the overwhelming tragedy at Mt Everest and respect for the families of the fallen, Discovery Channel will not be going forward with Everest Jump Live. Our thoughts and prayers go out to the whole Sherpa community."
The terrible disaster took place on Friday when avalanche struck a group of about 50, mostly Nepalese Sherpas, at more than 20,000 feet. The guides were carrying heavy loads of equipment and supplies to camps for climbers getting ready for peak trekking season. Four people remain missing as of Sunday.
The special which was scheduled to air May 11 would capture climber Joby Ogwyn's attempt to jump off the summit of Mount Everest in a wing suit. The star is safe as he was at base camp when the avalanche came. He expressed his sympathy in a Facebook post which read, "I am safe at base camp but I have lost my Sherpa team in the avalanche yesterday. These men were the salt of the Earth. Far better men than me. My heart is broken."
Kaji Sherpa, who was among the guides climbing the mountain during the tragedy, recalled the disaster. "A cliff of snow, like a house, came directly toward us, and many were killed at the same time," he said from his hospital bed in Katmandu, Nepal. The 39-year-old man was being treated for broken ribs.
He decided not to scale Mount Everest again. "For me, it is better not to climb from this time onwards," he said. "The Sherpas have suffered a lot. Those who stay at the base camp get food round the clock, while the Sherpa has to climb the mountain with an empty belly. He has to walk in the night all the time, as there is the risk of ice melting in the morning."