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Altitude illness victim's parents say goodbye

By Shi Yingying (China Daily)

15:34, October 24, 2012

Jin Ling in a picture she took of herself and posted on her micro blog this year. [Photo/China Daily]

People should not underestimate potential danger of ailment: expert

The parents of Jin Ling, a Shanghai hiker who died of altitude sickness in Lhasa on Friday, have flown to Tibet to bid a final farewell to their daughter.

Her parents, both in their 60s, arrived in the capital of Southwest China's Tibet autonomous region on Monday to attend her funeral and made plans to carry her ashes back to Shanghai on Wednesday.

Jin, who would have celebrated her 31st birthday on Oct 21, attracted widespread attention from users of the micro-blogging website Sina Weibo with her death. A group of them started an online campaign to raise money to help her parents pay for their flight to Lhasa, eventually collecting more than 15,000 yuan ($2,400).

Last week, Jin began to suffer the symptoms of altitude sickness - such as incessant coughing and a high fever - while she was on the Xinjiang-Tibet highway, one of the most difficult overland routes to travel in the region.

Despite her illness, she continued her trip with three other hikers she met on road.

She fainted on Friday and later died.

At an altitude of more than 2,400 meters, the atmosphere contains roughly 25 percent less oxygen than at sea level. Ngari's Burang county, where Jin died, lies more than 4,500 meters above the sea.

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