An 80-year-old Japanese man who began the year with his fourth heart operation became the oldest conqueror of Mount Everest on Thursday, a feat he called “the world’s best feeling”. Yuichiro Muira, who had climbed Everest in 2003 and 2008, when he was 70 and 75 respectively, reached the summit at 9:05 a.m. local time, according to a Nepalese mountaineering official and Miura’s Tokyo-based support team.

“We have arrived at the summit,” Miura said in a radio transmission to Kyodo from the world’s highest point. “80 years and 7 months. … The world’s most incredible mountaineering team had helped me all the way up here.” “I made it!” Miura said over the phone. “I never imagined I could make it to the top of Mount Everest at age 80. This is the world’s best feeling, although I’m totally exhausted. Even at 80, I can still do quite well.”

Miura conquered the mountain despite undergoing heart surgery in January for an irregular heartbeat, or arrhythmia, his fourth heart operation since 2007, according to his daughter. He also broke his pelvis and left thigh bone in a 2009 skiing accident. On his expedition’s website, he explained his attempt to scale Everest at an advanced age: “It is to challenge (my) own ultimate limit. It is to honor the great Mother Nature.”

“This will be deeply touching to all the people of Japan. And, especially, in an aging society, it will also give much courage and hope to all elderly people,” Suga said at a news conference. While had said as preparation for the climb he had been doing special training in Tokyo lifting 5 kg load on each leg and walking three times a week with a load of 25 to 30 kilo on his back.

“I have a dream to climb Everest at this age,” he had said. “If you have a dream never give up. Dreams come true.” It is true to the fact that age ages, not the dreams.

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