(ORLANDO, Fla.) – On Course Foundation member, former soldier and double above-knee amputee Hari Budha Magar set a world record by amazingly summiting Mount Everest while raising funds for the organization.
Hari taking on the world’s tallest mountain began in early May and culminated on Friday at more than 29,000 feet. He planned to hit a Callaway ball sporting the On Course Foundation logo with a Callaway driver, but weather conditions were too treacherous to mirror astronaut and first American in space Alan Shepard hitting a golf ball on the moon more than 60 years ago.
Thanks largely to On Course Foundation, Hari now has the confidence and self-esteem required to successfully complete this extreme challenge. The organization teaches wounded, injured and sick veterans golf playing and golf business skills, then places them in golf-industry jobs.
Hari joined On Course Foundation in 2013 where he learned the game upon picking up a club for the first time. His abilities skyrocketed and in 2018 he qualified for the annual Simpson Cup, On Course Foundation’s pinnacle event pitting U.K. veterans against their U.S. counterparts in Ryder Cup-style matches.
“When I first started playing golf, it felt awkward trying to balance on my prosthetics, and holding the club was tricky,” says Hari, 43, and an 18 handicap. “But now, it has become a big part of my life, and I have On Course Foundation to thank for that.
“Golf took me from rock bottom and helped me on my way to reach the top of the world.
It gave me confidence to start climbing and in climbing I found my purpose in life. My goal is to inspire others and prove there are no limitations to people’s ability, except mindset.”
“Hari’s determination in golf that translates to his mountain pursuits and everyday activities is exemplary,” says John Simpson, Founder and CEO of On Course Foundation. “Golf is the catalyst to productive lives, and being part of On Course Foundation is the correct medicine and sanctuary for veterans’ to recover from hidden and visible wounds.”
A former Corporal for 15 years in the British Army’s Gurkha Rifles Regiment, Hari lost both legs in Afghanistan in 2010 after an Improvised Explosive Device was triggered while on patrol.
Through his expedition, Hari’s goal is to impact veterans and others with disabilities to realize that, with the right mindset, anyone can achieve their dreams, no matter how big or impossible they may seem. Nearly 15% of the world’s population possesses a physical or mental disability.
Already holding five world records for climbing, Hari’s accomplishments include Mont Blanc, Mount Kilimanjaro and Mera Peak. The Mount Everest ascension constitutes another first for a double, above-knee amputee.
Hari’s Everest expedition was led by Krish Thapa, former Chief Mountain Instructor at the SAS and world-renowned climber.
Everest reaches 29,029 feet and borders Nepal (Hari’s birthplace) and Tibet, an autonomous region of China in the Himalayas. As the ultimate test of strength and fortitude, the human body is not designed to operate at that altitude. Add to that Hari’s challenges with reduced mobility, and there was a whole new layer of difficulty to navigate.
Equipment was one of Hari’s biggest challenges as each piece had to be adapted to get him onto the mountain. His cutting-edge kit contained specially designed crampons and heated sockets around his stumps and short engineered prosthetic legs he’s using for the climb.
You can read Hari’s inspirational mountain diary here.
About On Course Foundation
With offices in Orlando and London, On Course Foundation helps wounded, injured and sick military veterans use golf to facilitate their transitions back into society. Founded in 2010 by John Simpson – former business manager to Nick Faldo, Vijay Singh, Bernhard Langer, Nick Price and winners of 17 major tournaments – the organization breathes newfound confidence into more than 2,000 members. Education focuses on the business of golf, then placement in part- and full-time job placements at top golf companies in the golf industry. Many members were first introduced to golf by On Course Foundation where they learned playing skills, overcoming lost limbs, mobility, mental acuity and other physical and psychological debilitations. On Course Foundation’s pinnacle event is the annual Simpson Cup that pits 13-person teams from the U.S. and U.K. against one another in Ryder Cup-style matches with many competitors amazingly carrying low, single-digit handicaps.
More information: www.oncoursefoundationusa.org, firstname.lastname@example.org