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Pic shows: File photos of Xia Boyu on his various climbs. A double amputee climber from China is nearing the peak of the world???s highest mountain some 41 years after his first attempt almost cost him his life. Since his first attempt to summit Mount Everest, he has endured disability and even cancer, but he is now just over 200 metres (656 feet) away from realising his dream. Xia Boyu, 65, from south-western Chinese city of Chongqing, has reportedly reached camp "C4", some 8,600 metres (28,215 feet) above sea level and within touching distance of the 8,848-metre (29,028-foot) peak of Mount Everest ??" which in China is known by its Tibetan name "Qomolangma". Camp C4 is also where his first attempt failed in 1975, following a violent storm which trapped Xia ??" then a rookie member of China???s national mountaineering team ??" and others at the site. The grueling experience also cost him both his legs to frostbite, as he selflessly gave his sleeping bag to an ailing team member. Since surviving the ordeal and returning to his hometown, Xia has spent the last four decades learning how to use his prosthetic limbs, and also battled cancer in 1996. Having bested both those challenges, however, Xia went through tough physical conditioning and also prepared for his Everest ascent by climbing four mountains in the last seven years ??" all of which were higher than 6,000 metres (19,685 feet). He is now amongst hundreds who are hoping to summit the world???s highest peak in the coming days, as the climbing season enters its peak. Xia was quoted as saying before he made the final push to the summit: "Reaching the top of Qomolangma is a dream I???ve had for 40 years, and I???ve never given up." His inspiration comes from others who have done so despite the odds. In a radio interview conducted last month, Xia explained: "[New Zealander Mark Inglis climbed it without legs; an 80-year-old Japanese man did the same. I believe I can reach the top as well." Fans of the
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