Aussie trekker's family learnt of death via Google


The family of an Australian who died climbing Mt Everest is angry they read about her death on the internet.

Marisa Strydom was on a seven-week expedition with her husband Rob Gropel, when they both became ill with altitude sickness on their descent.

The two came cruelly close to achieving their life goal of conquering Mt Everest, but the experienced mountaineers' adventure turned to tragedy.

"You go from that complete disbelief to breaking down and shivering and starting to cry and then anger about it, [wondering] 'did someone do something wrong?'" Ms Strydom's sister Aletta Newman said.

Crews rushed to evacuate Mr Gropel from the mountain. Ms Newman has been told by the Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade (DFAT) that he's either severely ill or injured.

He's being treated in Kathmandu before being flown home to Australia -- but his wife couldn't be saved.

"She's just so talented, so intelligent and had so much to give. It's such an incredible waste," Ms Strydom's mother Maritha said.

The 34-year-old's family knew something was wrong when the couple's GPS tracker stopped working.

The trekking company didn't contact the family -- they learnt of Marisa's death by searching for news of Everest on Google.

"I just had this bad, bad feeling. I had to go to Melbourne and say goodbye," Maritha Strydom said.

Tributes have flooded in for the Melbourne lecturer but it's her family who will miss her most.

Efforts are underway to bring her body down thousands of metres of dangerous terrain.

The hope is she'll get home to Australia along with her husband.