Page 1357 - Week 04 - Tuesday, 27 March 2012

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And he is quoted:

“The sherpas had let me lie there for two hours thinking I was dead, and so they took my pack, which had useful things like a thermos of water and more clothing and head torch and all sorts of practical things,” he said later. “Right on the heels of that thought of ‘I’m going to die’, was the fact that I can’t die because I’m going back to my family. That was the premise of this whole expedition, was that I come back, I always come back. I wasn’t going to let it happen; I just had to stay alive, and somehow stay awake till the morning when at least there would be some sun, which would carry some sort of warmth.”

Next morning another team found Hall. A British member of the team, Myles Osborne, said later: “Sitting to our left, about two feet from a 10,000 foot drop, was a man. Not dead, not sleeping, but sitting cross legged in the process of changing his shirt. He had his down suit unzipped to the waist, his arms out of the sleeves, was wearing no hat, no gloves, no sunglasses, had no oxygen mask, regulator, ice axe, oxygen, no sleeping bag, no mattress, no food nor water bottle. ‘I imagine you’re surprised to see me here,’ he said. Now, this was a moment of total disbelief to us all. Here was a gentleman, apparently lucid, who had spent the night without oxygen at 8600 metres—

above sea level—

without proper equipment and barely clothed. And alive.”

This is an extraordinary story. His book Dead Lucky about this near-death experience on Everest was a bestseller. He was also a remarkable speaker, sharing his inspiring experiences with audiences around the world as a public speaker and through his books. In 1997, Hall received an Order of Australia for his services to mountaineering. He was a founding member of the philanthropic organisation the Australian Himalayan Foundation and a member of the Greater Blue Mountains World Heritage Area Advisory Committee. Those who knew Lincoln Hall described him as a remarkable human being with a natural generosity, humour and friendliness that made him welcome wherever he went.

Lincoln Hall unfortunately lost his life to mesothelioma at the age of 57. I have seen it suggested this may have arisen from building cubby houses from asbestos cement sheets during his childhood in Canberra. Hall is survived by his wife, Barbara, and two children, his father and two sisters.

Mrs Valerie Howse OAM

MR DOSZPOT (Brindabella) (5.02): I rise tonight to mark the death of Valerie Major Howse OAM, who died in Canberra on 16 March 2012. Valerie Howse was a remarkable woman whose passing represents the severing of another link with Australia’s military and political history of the early and mid 20th century. Valerie was proud of her family’s military heritage. Her father, Major General Rupert Downes, was director-general of medical services. Her father-in-law, Sir Neville Howse, was Australia’s first winner of the Victoria Cross. Valerie spent 18 years as a guide at the Australian War Memorial and always attended the annual Anzac Day and

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