TANZANIA, AFRICA – Today (May 26), some 7,556 miles from Fulton, Tim Conners will start his journey to summit Mount Kilimanjaro at its peak height of 19,341 feet, the highest point on the African continent.
Conners, a 22-year-old Fulton native, is climbing the mountain as part of his fundraiser mission, MounTimPossible to give back to organizations he says saved his life and to share his mantra to “redefine possible” across the globe.
In his freshman year of high school, Conners received a diagnosis of T-cell acute lymphoblastic lymphoma of which a tumor the size of a football in his chest suddenly halted life as he knew it.
After discovering the cancer was in his central nervous system and was attacking his eyes, Conners quickly lost his sight as only the first obstacle in a long and sometimes unsure recovery.
Through positivity, support, and perseverance, Conners eventually made a stunning recovery and vowed that even though cancer had taken his eyesight, he would use his new-found vision of life to help others live to their full potential.
Conners went on to graduate high school seventh in his class, has traveled the country as a motivational speaker at various events, published a book entitled It’s Impossible Until You Do It, became an adventure guru having climbed the Grand Canyon and Mount Sherman among others, and most recently graduated summa cum laude from Ithaca College with a Communications Studies degree.
The day after his college commencement, Conners and his team flew to Africa for the long anticipated trek to the top of Kilimanjaro in partnership with K2 Adventures Foundation.
But first, Conners and his team spent two days at the Mwereni Integrated School of the Blind in Moshi where Conners was able to share his story and interact with the young students, an opportunity that he referred to as “a life changing experience.”
“I thought that I would be teaching these students, but boy did they prove me wrong. They taught me so much about pride in school and community as well as work ethic. This school has evolved my mission to include more of a global impact,” Conners said in a weekly newsletter.
Now, the focus is set on the feat of tackling Kilimanjaro as the team begins their summit today.
“The nerves are there,” he said in a live Facebook video, adding that he and the team are hopeful that all the right conditions are in place of which they have full confidence in reaching the top.
The trip will take a total of nine days, having added in two additional rest days to increase the overall safety and team success, according to the itinerary left by Kevin Cherilla, lead guide of the climb and co-owner of K2 Adventures.
“For me, how high or whatever we make it up, that’s going to be my summit. We’re hoping that’s the top and we’re going to push very hard,” Conners said.
Reaching the peak will tally the 30th summit of Kilimanjaro for Cherilla and the fifth overall summit for Conners, his most recent major hike reaching 14,036 feet atop Mount Sherman.
“All the training, all the work, it all culminates here,” Conners said.
Each day, Conners will feature a live video on the K2 Adventures Facebook page at 10 a.m. EDT to update the progress of the journey.