|Patrick Shryock surrounding by a spectacular view of the mountains on his trek to Mount Everest Base Camp in Nepal.|
By Robin Gee, City Council Beat Editor
Patrick Shryock made the trek of a lifetime in April when he made the 12-day climb to the Mount Everest Base Camp in Nepal. The camp stands 5,300 meters, about 17,400 feet, above sea level. The number 5,300 is significant because this was the amount he set as a fundraising goal for a worldwide charity.
Shryock surpassed that goal, raising more than $6,800 for Direct Relief, a nonprofit, nondenominational emergency preparedness and response organization that operates in 90 countries and across the U.S.
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When his employers at DHL Express, announced the company would celebrate its 50th anniversary by inviting a group of employees to climb Mount Everest, he said his first thought was it was a great idea – for professional climbers. Yet, he was intrigued, and with encouragement from family and friends, decided to try out for the trek.
He was selected from a pool of 1,700 employees who answered the call. He was one of 14 who made the climb, and says it was an exciting adventure he will never forget.
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"Trip of a lifetime would be an understatement. I could write a book on just the mountain scenery alone and that wouldn't even include the culture, people and experiences from this trip," he said.
"I am very appreciative toward DHL and what they did to put this together. This experience was an adventure in valuing – valuing the different places, different parts of the world. Every day was different. You are surrounded by mountains and no photos or videos really do justice to how massive the peaks are – and the mountain views are different every day. These mountains were 15,000 to 20,000 feet tall. Absolutely spectacular!"
|At Mount Everest Base Camp, Shryock poses with his DHL colleagues from North and South America, China, Australia, UAE, Bahrain, UK, Ireland, Poland, Lithuania, South Africa, Nigeria and other places around the globe.|
At the base camp the group celebrated with photos of items that made the trek with them and with just being there together. The international team had gotten to know each other before the trip through What’s App and other social media.
"Our group became close friends. We got in touch before the trip but we are still talking. It has been a whirlwind of events, and now I’m sort of having friendship withdrawal. I miss my new friends."
The group also had lunch at the base camp with Roland Thomas, vice president of quality/Europe at DHL and experienced climber, who was preparing to scale the peak of the mountain. He is currently making the trek this month as part of the company’s anniversary event. The company has been using the 1960’s motown anthem “Ain’t No Mountain High Enough” in their ads and the mountain climb seemed a natural way to celebrate in a big way.
DHL Express is an international courier and mail service with more than 100,000 DHL workers in 220 countries.
What’s next for Shryock? He has already participated in Flying Pig’s 5K and 10K, but is going to take a little time to relax for now. There surely will be more mountains to climb, and he will be ready.