Saturday Jul 31, 2021
Canadian filmmaker Elia Saikaly, who recently accompanied Sajid Sadpara on his second summit of K2 in search of the bodies of fallen climbers Ali Sadpara and his companions, on Saturday shared a picture of the Pakistani flag marking the place of Ali Sadpara's burial, at Camp-4 on K2.
The picture, shared on Instagram, accompanies a heartfelt note by Saikaly in tribute to the deceased legend and in appreciation of his son’s determination which led to success in the search mission.
Saikaly recalled the fatal car accident which took his father, back on July 25, 2018, which according to him, was a motivation to accompany Sajid to find his father and the answers to what had happened to the fallen climbers up on the killer mountain.
He said that Sajid’s spirit and determination was as high as it could be for a son who lost his father to a mystery.
“Sajid was unstoppable, fueled by a determination only a son can have for his fallen and missing father,” the post added.
Saikaly narrated his experience on the high altitude, terming it as a "death zone", while also thanking the K2 for being "kind" to them.
The filmmaker attributed the force that drove the trio to accomplish the mission, solely to Sajid’s commitment. According to him, the quest was Sajid’s and him and Nepali mountaineer Pasang Kaji Sherpa, were just his companions on the "sacred mission".
"The strength, bravery, courage and commitment to his father was one of the powerful forces I’ve ever witnessed. He is his fathers son," he wrote
The post follows with Saikaly’s narration of how Sajid first buried Juan Pablo under the snow, collecting some of his belongings to give to the family, and then lay his father to rest.
The entire journey would surely have been a heartbreaking one, as Saikaly wrote:
"I hung by my ascender on a 75 degree slope of blue ice and recorded that moment, and all others, as our parallel mission was to honor our missing friends by finishing what we started in winter. We retraced their footsteps, found answers, many which are devastatingly heartbreaking, and we continue to gain insight into exactly what happened.”
He put his belief into words that nothing is impossible if done wholeheartedly, saying, “Lead with your heart, not your ego. One can never go wrong.”
The post reflects Saikaly’s contentment in the end that Ali Sadpara, who he called a snow leopard, rests in peace now. However for him, the mystery is yet to be answered.
Saikaly's picture was posted by Team Ali Sadpara's official account on Instagram, along with a message of gratitude to Sajid who it stated was the "decisive factor" in retrieving Ali's body.