The Untold Story of the Mount Hood Tragedy
Christian Newswire/ -- In December 2006, millions of people across the world waited in anguish to learn the fate of three climbers trapped on Mt. Hood. The massive search through the harshest storm on the mountain in more than a decade dominated news coverage.
Climber Kelly James was trapped in a snow cave and made a final call to his wife, Karen, which left the world hoping for a Christmas miracle. The climbers' family members huddled below the mountain praying for the safe return of their loved ones - it was not to be. But while the climbers ultimately faced a tragic fate, their families did not lose heart.
Now, Karen James, who spent the year after her husband's death investigating the facts and reconstructing the events, is telling the story about what really happened on the mountain in her new book, "Holding Fast: The Untold Story of the Mount Hood Tragedy" (Thomas Nelson, November 11, 2008).
In this captivating read, James reveals never-before- released information about the fateful climb and behind-the-scenes details of the rescue operation and how the families coped with the shocking loss of their husbands, fathers, sons and brothers.
The book reveals key details from the search and rescue efforts including:
- Kelly's last messages to his family on the cell phone that was found with him in the snow cave
- Never-before-published photos from Kelly's camera retrieved off the mountain
- Interviews from search and rescue workers including sheriff Joe Wampler who led the efforts, and Air Force Sergeant Josh Johnston of the 304th Squadron who found Kelly's body
- Facts from investigators as to what caused the tragedy
"I expect that fans of Into Thin Air and Touching the Void will thrill at the tale--the daring rescue, the blistering cold, the trials on the mountain. But I expect that people from every walk of life will touch the same fears, hopes, doubts, and soul-calming sense of purpose when they read Karen James' story," said vice president and publisher Joel Miller.
James shares how through the tragedy her faith led her to a new understanding of love, peace and purpose and tells of a husband's love for his family and God. James started journaling the ordeal and her experiences as a way to help cope with the death of her husband. In "Holding Fast" she shares her raw emotions, fears and beliefs about what happened on the mountain.
About the Author
Karen James is a former award-winning journalist who has reported at ABC, NBC and CBS TV news affiliates across the country. In addition to working in communications at AARP for a number of years, she is an accomplished painter and is co-owner of the public relations consulting firm James Nuñez Group. Karen was married to Kelly James, one of the climbers who tragically died atop Mt. Hood in 2006. Today she shares her life with her four stepchildren and greatly enjoys spending time with her family and friends.