Google engineer Dan Fredinburg died on Mount Everest on Saturday, and now his friend has released the heartbreaking letter Fredinburg was supposed to read when he reached the summit.
Fredinburg — the 33-year-old head of privacy for Google X — died from a major head injury sustained in the devastating 7.8 quake that has killed thousands of others. Friend Max Stossel was one of many people who he asked to give him letters.
“I love you brother,” Stossel wrote in the letter to his friend, which he posted on Facebook Sunday. “Please return safely.”
Stossel also wrote a heartbreaking Facebook post about Fredinburg.
“We lost one of my dearest friends yesterday. One of the most wonderful human beings any of us would have the pleasure of knowing,” Stossel wrote on Facebook.
“You live on through all of us that you’ve bettered and inspired so deeply.”
In his letter to his friend, Stossel also wrote that Fredinburg “greatly impacted” him and “pushed the human race to be the greatest.”
Fredinburg was not supposed to read the letters until he made it to the top of Mount Everest, which he was surveying for Google Maps.
Read the rest of the letter below:
We lost one of my dearest friends yesterday. One of the most wonderful human beings any of us would have the pleasure of knowing. The earthquake in Nepal took his life as he was trekking to the top of Mount Everest. Dan is the most interesting, adventurous, human I’ve ever known. He was a silent force for justice in the world in a way I thought only existed in fiction, someone who cared about others so much that he sometimes had trouble looking them in the eye. Someone who created fun and mischief out of thin air. Someone who broke up fights by walking into the middle of them and dancing with both fighters. Someone who I think about almost every day, through the lens of “What would Dan do?”.
Before his climb, Ashley asked some of his friends and family to write letters to take up to the top with him. I hope he got a chance to read this one, and if he didn’t, I hope he can somehow feel it now, along with the unbelievable amount of love and stories being shared around the world in his honor.
“Dan, (dan dan dan)
You must be really high up for this written echo (echo echo). Everyone you know and love is eventually going to die (die die die). When we do, we leave behind our stories. Those stories are told and passed on, impacting the lives of others until they are stories (stories stories stories). Your story has already greatly impacted mine for the better. With each adventure you return with stories that most people wouldn’t dream of experiencing themselves (selves selves selves). Thank you for pushing the human race to be greater, more daring, and to truly live life rather than survive it (it it it). I love you, brother. Please return safely with stories (stories stories). And even if you don’t… We’ll all be horrified, saddened, and heartbroken, that we can’t create new stories with you, but we’ll also know that you’ve already lived the equivalent of at least 100 lifetimes.
You are a fucking champion.
Safe, wonderful & breathtaking journey.
Max Stossel (ossel ossel)”
Dan Fredinburg, you live on through all of us that you’ve bettered and inspired so deeply. I love you, brother. Present tense.