For the first time in a public forum Mount Everest conqueror Jason Black will speak of his epic journey in becoming the first Donegal person in history to scale the greatest mountain in the world. The evening will be a fund raiser with all proceeds going to SVP & mental health locally & hosted by the Letterkenny Lions Club.
In ‘From Rock Bottom to the Top of the World’, Jason Black will recount the life-changing journey which culminated in him reaching the summit of Everest on 19 May 2013.
So what inspired this proud but ordinary Donegal man? Jason will tell us all.
Jason will share his life growing up as a young Donegal boy and how life dealt him some really difficult demons: losing his mum to cancer and losing his brother in an accident, dealing with bullying and the effect it had when he hit rock bottom. Yet as he stood on top of the world, Jason confronted his demons and survived… he tells it all.
“We are living in an environment with a lot of gloom and doom. Everyone has their own Everest to climb, some more than others whether it is suicide, depression, sickness, fear, drink and drugs, lack of work or lack of money. I only had to climb Everest for two months, people in my community are climbing it daily.
“I will speak of my own challenges in life and I’m sure people will draw the parallels. I’m nervous about speaking to an audience because I will be opening up about things I’ve never spoke of before. I will be showing pictures of the climb for the first time and speaking of how in the face of adversity we have to look deep within ourselves to meet our dreams.
“To the people of my county the message is clear, there is nothing that can’t be achieved, with the right plan, preparation and focus you can achieve anything in this world. That is what I want to bring back to the young and old of the county,” he added.
The Letterkenny Lions are delighted to be associated with Jason on such a unique event. “Jason is an inspiration to so many people.” said spokesman Eamon Stevenson.
“Reaching Everest was an epic journey but what we will hear here for the first time is what was the motivation and the reasons why Jason took on the challenge.
“In life we all have our challenges, but I think people will draw from Jason’s honest and candid account of his life journey,” he added.
Since his conquer of Mount Everest Jason has been keeping very busy. He was nominated for Donegal Person of the Year and picked up numerous awards, the highlight being receiving the Donegal Sports Person Special Achievement in 2013.
Jason’s achievements were recognised with a civic reception from Letterkenny Town Council while Donegal County Council commissioned a symbolic sculpture by Redmond Herrity for Letterkenny’s Market Square and for the foot of Mount Errigal.
Jason is now busy preparing to scale Mount McKinley in Alaska in May while last September he and four very proud Donegal men – Clive and Keith Davison (twins), Brian McFadden, and Francie Gallagher – stood high on Mont Blanc, the highest mountain in northern Europe.
Since Jason’s return from the Himalayas, he has carried his powerful message to schools and at several youth events including the Mental Health Roadshow, promoting mental health awareness to young people in Donegal on behalf of the Donegal Youth Council.
His wife, Sharon, and their children Laura, Kate, Billy and Ella, are so proud of what he has achieved, and what he is doing for their community.
Jason’s life story has the power to change the way you thing about life ….. Trust us it’s thrilling from start to finish.
To follow Jason’s journey www.facebook.com/voodooireland or http://www.jasonblack.ie/
“There’s no mountain too high, there’s no problem too big to be conquered” Jason Black
Date: Wednesday 30 April 2014