New Zealand's Sir Edmund Hillary, who along with Nepal's Tenzing Norgay Sherpa became the first to conquer Mount Everest, died in hospital on Friday. He was 88.
New Zealand flags flew at half mast at Scott Base in Antarctica on Friday, mourning the loss of one of the greatest adventurers of the 20th century.
"The legendary mountaineer, adventurer, and philanthropist is the best-known New Zealander ever to have lived. But most of all he was a quintessential Kiwi," New Zealand Prime Minister Helen Clark said on Friday in announcing Hillary's death.
Hillary scaled the world's highest mountain in 1953, telling companions after the climb: "We knocked the bastard off".