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article imageFrench multiple sclerosis sufferer makes Everest skydive

By Anne Sewell     Oct 27, 2013 in Sports
Kathmandu - Marc Kopp, a multiple sclerosis (MS) sufferer from France, has officially become the first disabled person to skydive over Mount Everest on Sunday. He landed successfully and was taken to hospital for a check up, just as a precaution.
Digital Journal reported on Saturday about the plans of Marc Kopp, an MS sufferer for more than a decade, to make a tandem skydive over Everest with his friend and champion skydiver, Mario Gervas.
At that stage, the actual day of his skydive was uncertain, as they had to wait for suitable weather conditions.
However, they both got up there and skydived over Everest this morning.
After landing, Kopp was taken to a hospital in Kathmandu, where doctors examined him for any injuries he may have sustained during the jump.
He told the media: "I feel very happy. I am exhausted but very happy."
He did say that preparation for the jump was "very painful" and that it left his whole body hurting.
"There were many times in the last few days when I thought I wouldn't be able to realise my dream," he said.
Also, as it was not possible to use his normal wheelchair on the trek through the Himalayas, it was necessary for him to spend a few hours a day on horseback, which was hard on his spine, to reach the airstrip.
Once up in the helicopter, Kopp and Gervasi jumped out at 10,000 meters (32,800 feet) and then soared over the scenery.
After completing the jump Sunday morning, he returned to Kathmandu by helicopter, where doctors advised him to rest for a day.
"I hope my action will inspire others living with this illness. I hope many more will follow in my footsteps," Kopp told AFP.
Kopp lives in Longwy, northeast of Paris, and has suffered for more than a decade from multiple sclerosis (MS), which disrupts the brain's ability to communicate with the body.
Symptoms of the disease are that muscles weaken, lesions emerge on the brain and spinal cord, and in the worst cases, patients can lose the ability to speak or walk.
Kopp raised 26,000 euros ($35,885) for the trip from friends and well-wishers. He volunteers and runs a support group for fellow sufferers of MS.
Views of Mt Everest
Views of Mt Everest
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