Husband of Everest victim blames himself

  • 30/05/2016
(Nepal VisionTreks / Facebook)
(Nepal VisionTreks / Facebook)

The grief-stricken husband of an Australian woman who died climbing Mount Everest says he blames himself for the tragedy.

"It's my job to protect my wife and get her home," Robert Gropel says.

His wife Marisa Strydom fell ill with altitude sickness in an area close to the summit called the 'death zone'.

Rob pressed on a further 15 minutes to the peak alone, but by the time he returned Marissa had deteriorated.

"She couldn't walk and the terrain was very difficult. It was very steep and rocky. It was very risky."

"I still can't look at any pictures of her because it just breaks my heart."

The Mount Everest death toll so far this year is five.