THE distraught family of an experienced climber killed in an avalanche in the Highlands said yesterday that he “died in a place he loved”.
Max Norman, 41, an architect who lived in Ipswich in Suffolk but grew up in Scotland, was found dead on Coireag Dubh Mor in the Torridon mountains on Saturday.
Yesterday, his wife, Charlotte, said that she and their three children had lost an “amazing person”.
In a statement the family said: “We are so proud of all that Max achieved in his life.
“Max had a first class honours degree from the Edinburgh College of Art and was an award-winning landscape architect working on renowned projects internationally and in the UK.
“He led several large-scale commissions in Sweden, Beirut and Hong Kong. He moved to Suffolk eight years ago and established a growing business, on Ipswich’s new waterfront with his wife Charlotte, also a landscape architect. The business is continuing to expand and grows from strength to strength.
“It has an international reputation for state-of-the-art landscape design.”
Mr Norman and his wife built their own distinctive house in Shotley just outside Ipswich.
His family added: “Max grew up in Scotland and had a passion for the Highlands.
“He was an experienced mountaineer and travelled across the world – hiking and climbing in Scandinavia and Northern Europe, as well as in his beloved Scotland.
“Recently he completed a pioneering trip across Norway. Max loved to climb and this was a repeat of many mid-winter trips in the Highlands. He was always well equipped and cautious of the dangers.
“Max knew how to deal with difficult conditions on the mountains and was incredibly risk adverse and mindful of safety.
“Their well-drilled emergency procedures meant they were rescued as soon as possible after the avalanche.
“This ensured they did not spend another night in the open. Max died in a place he loved. He leaves a huge family, many friends and a community bereft of a vivacious and caring man who was besotted with his children.
“He lived every moment and will be terribly missed.”
Mr Norman and his climbing partner, who is also from Shotley, were reported missing last Friday night after they failed to return from a climb on Coireag Dubh Mor.
Mountain rescue teams and Stornoway coastguard helicopter carried out a search that night but were forced to call it off due to bad weather. The two men were found the following day but Mr Norman had already died.
A report of the accident is being submitted to the procurator-fiscal.
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