Nepal's record-setting Everest guide returns as a hero
FILE - In this May 20, 2018, file photo, Nepalese veteran Sherpa guide, Kami Rita, 48, waves as he arrives in Kathmandu, Nepal. Rita has scaled Mount Everest for a 23rd time, breaking his own record for the most successful ascents of the world's highest peak. (AP Photo/Niranjan Shrestha, File)
The Associated Press
Published Saturday, May 25, 2019 8:31AM EDT
KATHMANDU, Nepal - Family, friends and supporters have welcomed a veteran Sherpa guide upon his return to Nepal's capital days after his 24th climb of Mount Everest extended his record.
Kami Rita flew back Saturday from Everest to Kathmandu, where he was greeted by the waiting crowd at the airport.
His wife hugged him and the crowd covered him with a cream-colored scarf and offered him yogurt.
The brief celebration at the airport parking area with traditional drums was followed by Rita riding on a truck waving to supporters as they drove out of the airport.
He told reporters he was very happy but was exhausted.
Rita reached Everest's 8,850-meter (29,035-foot) peak on Tuesday, the second time he had climbed to the summit in a week.