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22-Year Mystery Solved: Mummified American Climber Found in Andes

Daniel Kim Views  

An American climber was found in a mummified state after going missing in the Andes mountains 22 years ago.

The AP News reported on Wednesday that the Peruvian police recovered a body from a camp located at an altitude of 17,060 feet (5,200 meters) on Huascarán in the Cordillera Blanca range of the western Andes, which has an elevation of 22,205 feet (6768 meters)

The mummified body was revealed as the thick layer of snow and ice that covered the summit of Huascarán recently melted. With the assistance of a mountain rescue team and alpine climbing guides, the police recovered the body on July 5.

While the body had been mummified, the clothing, harness, rope, and climbing shoes the climber wore were perfectly preserved. A wedding ring was still on the mummified hand. They identified the mummified body as the American mountaineer William Stampfl after finding his driver’s license among the possessions. He went missing in 2002 while climbing with two friends.

His family, who had given up hope of finding him after he disappeared on a peak at 21,981 feet (6700 meters) during a blizzard, finally learned of his whereabouts 22 years later.

Joseph Stampfl and his sister Jennifer expressed mixed emotions about the situation.

Jennifer shared her feelings, stating, “It’s been a shock. When you get that phone call that he’s been found, your heart just sinks. You don’t know how exactly to feel at first.”

Stampfl’s body will be handed over to his family with the help of Peruvian police and mountain guides. The family plans to move his body to a funeral home in Lima, the capital of Peru, for the funeral.

Daniel Kim
content@viewusglobal.com

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