Henry Worsley, an ex-army officer, died of exhaustion and dehydration during his attempt to recreate Shackleton’s famous failed Antarctic crossing to raise money for the Duke’s Endeavour Fund.
Kensington Palace released an official statement from The Duke of Cambridge who expressed his sadness at the “loss of a friend” and ensured that “his family will receive the support they need at such a difficult time”. He added that Worsley “showed great courage and determination” in his “selfless commitment to his fellow servicemen and women by undertaking the extraordinary Shackleton solo expedition on their behalf”.
David Beckham praised the 55-year-old for his service to our country and added that he was “lucky to have met Henry”. Survivalist and adventurer Bear Grylls tweeted his devastation at the loss of “one of the strongest men and bravest soldiers” he knew.
Beginning the expedition in November and having covered over 900 miles in 71 days, Henry Wolsey was just thirty miles short of his goal of being the first person to complete the trek across the continent unassisted.
Worsley explained that his desire to help the wounded servicemen and women was what kept him going through the toughest of conditions. After serving in the army for 36 years he saw it as a way of giving back to those who had suffered due to their service.
Upon his deterioration he was airlifted to Chile for treatment where he published his final poignant message in which he explained that the 71 days he’d spent alone in the Antarctic had finally taken its toll and, “it is with sadness that I report it is journey’s end – so close to my goal”.
The trek has already surpassed its £100,000 target for the Endeavour Fund, providing treatment for wounded soldiers, with that amount expected to increase over the next couple of weeks.