Team Jordan Romero returned to the United States on Wednesday, after accomplishing their amazing feat, in summiting Mt. Everest, the tallest peak in the world at 29,035’—and breaking one record and making a new one. Thirteen-year-old Jordan Romero is the youngest person ever to reach the peak of Everest and, as accompanied by dad Paul Romero and his partner Karen Lundgen, they are also the first family to be atop Everest together. When, nearly two months later, the now world-renowned trio returned to the U.S., Jordan’s mom LeighAnne Drake and younger sister Makaela were there to surprise them for a big hug, as this has been the teen’s longest time away from home ever (though he had been gone for as many as three weeks at a time in climbing other peaks of the world). Since arriving in New York City on June 2, Jordan, Paul and Karen have been on a media blitz and, this morning, were featured on NBC’s “Today Show.” In their interview on the couch with Matt Lauer, Jordan explained how the altitude, at over 20,000’ for weeks, did prompt minor headaches and, he said of Everest, “Climbing Everest is only 10 percent climbing, the rest of it is resting and acclimating.” Paul notes that though there were some bluebird days on the mountain, they also braved “major snow dumps” and temperatures as low as -60° degrees below—and coupled with winds! Still, they were happy just to be there, and as Karen noted on TV, Jordan had said, “If this is all we do, look at the mountain, I’m happy.” And yet, they are happier still, as their goal has been accomplished. According to Jordan this morning, “It was a very, very hard mountain, and it took lots of dedication and time preparing for it.” Now, the trio prepares for their return back to Big Bear, and are scheduled to fly into LAX tonight, and greet friends at Nottingham’s in the Village of Big Bear Lake on Saturday at noon. A community-wide welcome home celebration will be held on Wednesday, June 9 at Big Bear Middle School. The event, billed as “Welcome Back Jordan and Live Your Dreams Fair,” will be from 4:30pm to 8pm at the BBMS field (off Big Bear Boulevard at Jeffries Road). There will also be a dinner opportunity at 5:30pm ($8 for adults, $5 for children), to be followed by a slide show at 7pm. For more information on this event, including fair booth and volunteer opportunities, contact the Big Bear Chamber of Commerce at 866-4607. For more information on Jordan, click on the “Jordan Romero” tab at the end of this story.
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