Family Remembers Va. Climber

Funeral arrangements pending for Annandale man

Sunday, Jul 29, 2012  |  Updated 11:58 PM EDT
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Friends and family are remembering a man from Fairfax County, found dead Saturday in Peru along with his hiking companion.  Derrick Ward reports

Friends and family are remembering a man from Fairfax County, found dead Saturday in Peru along with his hiking companion. Derrick Ward reports

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The family of a Virginia climber who perished while descending from a peak in Peru earlier this month remembered him as a devout Catholic who traveled the world to "seek truth and better himself."

Rescuers found the body of 32-year-old Ben Horne, of Annandale, Saturday in the Cordillera Blanca mountain range on Saturday. Rescue coordinator Ted Alexander told the Associated Press that Horne and his climbing companion, 29-year-old Gil Weiss, died after falling off a ridge in their descent from the Palcaraju peak.

"Most everything Ben did in life he loved," Horne's mother, Christine, told News4's Derrick Ward Sunday. "The way he lived his life was very principled and based on his love of nature, his love of the outdoors, his love of God, and his love of challenges, challanges that he wroked hard to be able to do, not anything reckless."

"The consolation is that he loved the Lord and that he's in heaven now," said Horne's father, Gary.

The family did not reveal any funeral arragements. They planned to fly to Peru to collect Ben's body Sunday night.

"Climbing for Ben was about pushing himself mentally, it was about spiritual and physical development," said friend Liora Danan. "It wasn't so much about the achievement."

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