On Sunday, March 28th, 2010, Tom Bennett passed away due to a sudden and severe onset of HACE after spending the night with me near the summit of Mt Shasta.
The day before Tom passed away from HACE on Mt Shasta, he told me that he was planning on signing up to be a member on Summitpost as soon as we got back from our climb. He had only recently discovered this wonderful community and I know that he would have loved meeting all of the great people here.
Since Tom was never a member, he has no profile to be turned into a memorial, as has been done for other SP members who have since passed away. In lieu of this, I'm making a memorial album for Tom. You may have never met him, but I wish you had, as he left a lasting impression on everyone he met.
Tom's family is setting up a memorial site with photos of Tom, and his legacy will live on as his family in Canada and the CHAOS outdoor club at Berkeley intend to set up some memorial funds/services to help others climb safely in the mountains. They are also collecting donations for to the Siskiyou SAR. I will add relevant links and info to this album as things develop.
Right now all of the photos are of Tom on trips I took with him, but I'll try to add some from his earlier years climbing in British Columbia.
I have also put up a photo album of some of the photos that Tom and I both took on our last trip together on Mt Shasta.
For context, many of the earlier news reports made up their own story, got facts wrong, and overgeneralized subtle yet important points, and I have since been correcting that misinformation for the sake of Tom's memory and the representation of mountaineering to the public. Some key points of correction are:
Although the aftermath from this experience was ugly, there were some people who showed great professionalism and sensitivity throughout this ordeal, and I am grateful for the help they have given me and the Bennett family.
Donations in Tom's memory can be made to Siskiyou County Sheriff's Department Search and Rescue Fund at 305 Butte St., Yreka, CA 96097 for "Special Equipment Funds - In Memory of Tom Bennett".
Online condolences can be made to the Bennetts at www.oneilfuneralhome.ca
[img:625663:aligncenter:medium:Tom Bennett - August 28, 1983 to March 28, 2010]
Mt Shasta Forum Threads
Trip Reports (Tom's climbs)