Wife: California man dies while scaling Mt Everest

AP News
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Posted: May 04, 2011 3:39 PM

The family of a Northern California man who was climbing Mount Everest says he died during the dangerous trek up the world's tallest peak.

The family says Rick Hitch of Roseville died of an apparent heart attack Sunday.

Loretta Hitch told KCRA her 55-year-old husband collapsed at 23,000 feet as he approached the last base camp before the summit.

Friends and family say Hitch was an experienced climber who trained for 15 months before traveling to Nepal in March. They say he had scaled six of the tallest mountains, including Kilimanjaro and McKinley.

In his last blog entry on April 26, Hitch described feeling very tired and the air being so thin that putting on his boots took his breath away.

He's survived by his wife and two adult daughters.

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Information from: KCRA-TV, http://