Climbing McKinley for a Friend

The Honolulu Advertiser

August 5 


by Tanya Bricking, 

Advertiser Staff Writer


      He weathered blizzards, temperatures below minus 50 degrees and a cracked rib, but Alex Steelsmith's dedication to a friend kept him going on a climb up Alaska's Mount McKinley this summer to raise money for the Multiple Sclerosis Foundation.


      A good friend of Steelsmith's lived with an extremely debilitating form of multiple sclerosis (MS) for more than a decade and died two years ago. Steelsmith climbed the mountain in her memory. 


      Now Steelsmith, a Hawai'i artist, is working on a painting based on the climb. "It means a lot to me," he said, because of Jean. "It's in honor of her and of others who have MS."


      For a donation of $60 or more to the MS Foundation, Steelsmith will provide a signed and numbered limited-edition print of his artwork, which should be finished by October. Donors of $150 or more will receive a limited edition artist's proof; donors of $500 or more will receive a hand-embellished artist's proof. 


      All of the money will go to the MS Foundation. Contributions can be sent to: Steelsmith, 150 Hamakua Drive, No. 800, Kailua, HI 96734. Donations must be received by September 18 to ensure free print delivery by November 15. So far, Steelsmith has raised more than $10,000.