CLIMBER ‘DIED SAVING HIS WIFE’
AROCK climber crushed to death when 1,000 tonnes of rock fell at Yosemite National Park heroically dived on top of his wife to save her life.
Andrew Foster, 32, was trapped when a huge sheet of granite fell from the face of the El Capitan monolith on Wednesday.
Mr Foster and his wife Lucy, from Cardiff, are believed to have been scouting out the ascent from a trail when a “sheet” of granite around 40m by 20m plummeted from a height of 200m.
Mrs Foster spoke to her husband’s aunt and said she was only alive because Andrew jumped to save her.
Gillian Stephens told the Times: “She said: ‘Andrew saved my life. He dived on top of me as soon as he could see what was going to happen. He saved my life’.”
The couple ran their own blog Cam and Bear, in which they described their love of the outdoors.
“We are a young married couple who enjoy nothing more than getting out and having adventures in the mountains together,” they wrote.
“We are not extreme athletes and describe ourselves simply as passionate weekend warriors.”
He had proposed to his wife, who is originally from Shropshire, during a skiing holiday in the Alps in 2015 and they married the following year.
Mr Foster, who grew up in Cheltenham, Gloucestershire, before attending Cardiff University, worked for clothing company Patagonia and was previously employed by outdoor store Up and Under.
Staff at the Cardiff-based shop said in a statement: “Andy Foster was an inspirational member of the Up and Under family.
“He was a highly regarded member of staff for five years, before he took a job with Patagonia.
“He remained a dedicated friend of Up and Under, and was regularly to be found in the store. His passion for the outdoors, and mountains in particular, was enormous and infectious.
“Andy and Lucy’s intentions upon returning from Yosemite were, with the help of Andy’s father, to covert a van into a motorhome to enable them to explore the European Alps for the next 12 months.
“It was then our hope that Andy would return to Up and Under in a part-time consultative role while he also chased other ambitions.
“Andy was highly respected and loved and his loss will be sorely felt by us all.
“Our thoughts are with Lucy and his family.”
Friend Jess Spate wrote on Facebook said: “Rest in peace Andrew Foster. Always cheerful, never a mean word to say about anyone, up for anything, any time.
“Never so much as a cross word, even when he must have been as cold and tired as it’s possible to be while still walking.
“There’s nobody I’d rather climb a rapidly thawing frozen waterfall with at 2am on a work night.
“Nobody better to play hangman with at midnight in Cardiff City Hall... Nobody better to be topping out of a mountain route with when the weather turned.”
Andrew Foster, 32, was killed in a rock fall which also seriously injured his 28-year-old wife Lucy