The father of an 11-year-old boy who climbed the 15,000-foot-high Matterhorn mountain has been criticised over the danger – and for allowing his son to stay away from school for two days to carry out the incredible feat.
Federico Tomasi from Beinasco in the Metropolitan City of Turin in the Italian region Piedmont, climbed the Matterhorn, a 4,478-metre (14,692-foot) high mountain in the Alps straddling the border between Italy and Switzerland, with his father last week.
Federico’s father explained that it took many months of preparation and practice, and that the boy was considered suitable for the climb by several mountain guides.
Federico set off on 13th September from Plan Maison in Aosta Valley (at an altitude of 2,561 metres) and arrived at the Carrel Refuge where he spent the night with professional mountaineers.
The next day, shortly before dawn, he resumed his climb to reach the summit at 4,478 metres.
On 14th September, Fabio Tomasi wrote a post dedicated to his son on Facebook: “Today, you made your dream come true. A dream that lasted two years, since that August on the top of the Rognosa di Sestriere (mountain in Piedmont) when you said ‘Dad, I’ll climb Monviso and the Cervino (Matterhorn)’. Words that would probably never be spoken by any other nine-year-old child.
“These past 24 months, you’ve travelled dozens of railways, long excursions, road trips, climbing.
“What you’ve done is something extraordinarily unique for a child; it’s impossible to really realise. From Plan Maison to the Carrel Refuge in four hours, in the company of a man I met 10 minutes before. You found yourself sleeping among professional mountaineers in a shelter at 3,830 metres without any heating. You woke up at 4am, four degrees below zero, flashlight on your head, you climbed two hours in complete dark.
“My esteem and pride of being privileged to be your father has no end.
“You proved that the concept of limit can be really relative, that you have to struggle to sacrifice and try things. You’ve been an example for those who believe ‘cool’ and ‘tough’ is spitting, swearing, smoking and getting drunk. Since you were born, I haven’t heard you say a dirty or swear word yet.
“My wish is that this experience increases your passion for the mountains.
“But starting tomorrow, you will go to school with the same grit, determination, and willpower you used to climb the most beautiful mountain in the world.”
Despite the father’s heartfelt words, some netizens expressed concern that the boy missed school to participate in the potentially dangerous climb.
Fabio said: “The boy was absent from school for two days.
“In short, at 8am he was on the Matterhorn, at 8pm he was at home preparing his bag for school.”