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LORD Hunt, who led the team which first conquered Everest, died yesterday aged 88.

Although the peer did not reach the summit of the world's highest mountain, he was credited as the driving force behind the expedition.

Lord Hunt, who also helped found the Duke of Edinburgh Award scheme, waited at 21,000ft to welcome back Edmund Hillary and Sherpa Tensing after their historic climb in May, 1953.

News of the achievement, on the morning of Queen Elizabeth's coronation, was celebrated around the world.

Lord Hunt died peacefully at his home in Henley, Oxfordshire.

His daughter, Sally Nesbitt, said he had been ill for a short time.

The ex-Montgomery staff officer served in the army for 25 years.

An active campaigner on behalf of youngsters, he resigned as assistant commandant of the Army Staff College to become the first director of the Duke of Edinburgh's Awards. Last night, a Buckingham Palace statement said: "The Queen and the Duke of Edinburgh were very sad to learn of Lord Hunt's death.

"He particularly helped and encouraged young people in the United Kingdom and in the Commonwealth."
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Author:White, Stephen
Publication:The Mirror (London, England)
Date:Nov 9, 1998
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