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Erik Weihenmayer (born September 23, 1968) is the first blind person to reach the summit of Mount Everest, on May 25, 2001. He also climbed Mount Ararat and completed the Seven Summits in September 2002. He is the author of Touch the Top of the World: A Blind Man's Journey to Climb Farther Than the Eye can See, his autobiography.
After he became blind, at first, Weihenmayer did not want to use a cane or learn Braille. He wanted to prove that he could continue living as he had. He tried to play ball, but once he understood that he was incapable of doing so, he learned to wrestle. In high school he went all the way to the National Junior Freestyle Wrestling Championship in Iowa. At that time he started using a guide dog. Then he went to Boston College and graduated as an English major. He became a middle-school teacher and wrestling coach.
With Sabriye Tenberken he climbed with teenagers from the school for the blind. A documentary film based on the project, Blindsight, was released in 2006. Another documentary, Fellowship of the Andes, was produced by Dutch filmmaker Bernd Out, and gives the account of Weihenmayer accompanying a team of blind and visually impaired students on a mountain trek across the Andes in June 2006. In 2011, he competed on ABC's Expedition Impossible.
- Weihenmayer, Erik, Touch the Top of the World: A Blind Man's Journey to Climb Farther Than the Eye can See, Plume, 2002, ISBN 0-452-28294-2, ISBN 978-0-452-28294-0
- Weihenmayer, Erik & Stoltz, Paul, The Adversity Advantage: Turning Everyday Struggles into Everyday Greatness, Touchstone, 2006, ISBN 0-7432-9022-4, ISBN 978-0-7432-9022-7
- Receives Honorary Doctorate Degree on 16 May 2009 from the FW Olin School of Business at the Babson College MA
- <a href="http://sports.jrank.org/pages/5216/Weihenmayer-Erik.html">Erik Weihenmayer Biography - Chronology, Further Information - SELECTED WRITINGS BY WEIHENMAYER:</a>
- abs-cbnnews.com, Erik Weihenmayer: Beyond what eyes can see
- Erik's Official Website
- "Weihenmayer Reaches the Top" (article from The Braille Monitor)
- Erik's statistics and climbing biography on 7ummits.com