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PIA Press Release

Filipino Everest climbers encourage Oro climbers to pursue dreams

Cagayan de Oro City (4 July) -- “Kaya ng Pinoy!”

Thus exclaimed Art Valdez, expedition leader of the First Philippine Mt. Everest Expedition Team to all local mountaineers present during the forum held Thursday morning at the City Council Session Hall.

Valdez accompanied Erwin “Pastor” Emata and Leo Oracion, the first two Filipinos who reached the summit of Mt. Everest last month together with the team physician, Dr. Ted Esguerra and expedition manager John Fortes of the Philippine Airlines in their visit to the region.

During the forum, Valdez encouraged the local mountaineers present to keep on climbing until they achieve their dreams. “A mountaineer is always a mountaineer no matter what,” stressed Valdez.

He said that the Filipino team was formed to prove to the world that in faith, unity, teamwork and sacrifice, the Filipino can climb the 29,035 ft. Mt. Everest-- the highest mountain on earth.

“We believe in the Filipino spirit. Though it’s quite ambitious but only when we are united, we can achieve greater heights,” Valdez pointed out.

“Putting a team of Filipino climbers is the only way to get respect among climbers and leaders in the world,” added Valdez.

Emata and Oracion both said that if they were able to achieve their dreams of climbing the highest mountain on earth, any climber can do it as long as they are focused and believed that they can do it.

The group extended their gratitude to City Mayor Vicente Y. Emano, whom they met during a courtesy call after the forum for the support he gave.

The unity climb of the team is set in summer of 2007 bringing three women with them including Carina Dayondon of Cagayan de Oro. (City Information Office / RAGCOM) [top]

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