The Pico de Orizaba, popular among climbers. The Pico de Orizaba, popular among climbers.

US diplomat killed climbing Orizaba

A fellow climber was rescued yesterday and airlifted off the mountain

A United States diplomat died on the weekend while climbing Mexico’s highest mountain, but his companion was rescued yesterday.


Rescue efforts began Sunday but had to be suspended after a few hours when strong winds prevented the use of a helicopter.

However, a Puebla Civil Protection rescue team was able to reach the scene on foot where they provided aid to one of the climbers, who had been seriously injured in a fall.

Yesterday afternoon, Nathan Cahill, 26, was airlifted to a hospital in Mexico City.

Rescue workers recovered the body of the second climber, identified as Freddy Cahill, who had also fallen, and brought him down from the mountain on foot this morning.

Today the U.S. embassy said the climbers were members of its diplomatic mission.

A source who requested anonymity said the climbers had neglected to provide information regarding the route they would be following on the mountain to any state or municipal authority.

In November, a U.S. climber died and seven others were rescued on the mountain, also known as Citlaltépetl.

Local authorities previously warned of dangerous conditions due to an unusually cold winter and the need to let local authorities know climbers’ plans before ascending.

At 5,675 meters high, the Pico de Orizaba has become a favorite destination for national and international climbers. It is situated on the border between Puebla and Veracruz.

Source: La Jornada (sp), Associated Press (en)

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  • WestCoastHwy

    Always sad to see the “Privileged” die in accidents.

  • Rocket

    It never ceases to amaze me that people try to climb Colorado 14ers with little to protect them. Then I go to Mexico and It can be the same thing. This is a tough and dangerous mountain to climb and you need to use common sense and be well trained when doing it.

    • WestCoastHwy

      Being a Mountaineer in my early days, now it’s just hookers and booze, their was one thing you needed to consider: the only person you need to care for is yourself; of which, I see today’s climbers all strapped together, well it just takes that one idiot and you’re all going down. Ice axe arrest baby!