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Oregon Teen With Down Syndrome First to Climb Mt. Everest

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Eli Reimer, age 16, became the first teen with Down Syndrome to climb to the base camp on Mt. Everest. Not only is the teen's trek impressive, which include hiking 70 miles, he's also doing it for a worthy cause with donations going to the Elisha Foundation. The foundation was created by Eli's parents, Justin and Tamara Reimer, who started it to help support those living with disabilities.

Eli and a team of eight other hikers, including his father, hiked to the South base camp in Nepal; the other base camp is located in China. The South base camp lies at an altitude of 17,500 feet and is a pretty rigorous climb, with most hikers resting a day or two while taking the trip to acclimate to the altitude change. Eli's trip has raised over $85,000 so far, but he says that he hopes to reach $100,000 in donations to give to the foundation.

The trek is not for the faint of heart–combined with the high altitude, Mt. Everest also poses frigid temperatures and deadly avalanches. Eli and the team of eight were monitored throughout their trek for their blood saturation level and oxygen levels, but he was apparently stronger than the rest of the bunch and even led the group at times. Eli's tenacity shows that individuals with disablities are invaluable and that disabilities are not a limitation to the human spirit, regardless of what they may do to the body or mind.