This was put on the RAF Mountain Rescue Facebook page ” It is with great sadness that inform you of the death this morning of Jimmy Clitheroe.
Jimmy had been ill with cancer, diagnosed in Feb of this year and it sadly took him this morning.
Thoughts are with his family and those of us who knew and respected him.”
I first met Jimmy when instructing on a winter course. The Team leader Jim Morning told me “we have a good one here” Jim rarely gave out praise. We were on the Ben and I introduced Jimmy to Castle ridge and he asked if we could do something else so we went over the summit and came down climbing Bob Run on the way home. I had told about Ian Clough connection with routes on the Ben next day we did Route Magor and a route on the walk off La Petite he was so keen. Jim was right he was a solid troop.
RAF Stafford was Jimmy’s first time every time we met them I was impressed on some wild Call outs in Scotland they were and still are a “band of brothers” I was sent to Innsworth in the early 80’s and joined Stafford. Jimmy took me climbing on many of the classics on the rock we had some grand days. He showed me many of the great crags of the Peak and Lake District and ran me ragged collecting star routes. After coming back we would always make a drink in the pub and the fun would start. These were great days.
Later on Jimmy became a team member at Kinloss when I was Team Leader as always so calm and cool. He later qualified as a Team Leader. I doubt there are any Team Leaders as respected as Jimmy. He had such a natural leadership and was so respected and loved by his team. It’s not easy at times to be so well liked as a Team Leader but Jimmy was.
Mr “unassuming” he was when I spoke to him about his ascent of Denali in Alaska where I am sure he made the summit in poor weather alone. He descended by the Rescue Couloir in awful weather he rarely spoke of his achievements , he loved the mountains and was always an inspiration to us all.
On the Annual winter course that I was running he left early and I caught him soling the Curtain a grade 5 ice route with another troop. He was smiling as he came off and said it was a wee warm up, You had to laugh.
Like most of us his family gave up so much but during his service to Mountain Rescue I hope the Mountain Rescue Family look after them. The troops visited Jimmy in his last days showing a great respect to a man taken far to to soon.
My thoughts like many are with Jimmy’s family my condolences to you . Thinking of you Chrissy, Kirsty, Maddison, all his family and all the troops that knew him.
Any photos of Jimmy would be appreciated. The RAF Mountain Rescue Facebook page is full of wonderful comments I hope they bring some comfort to the family.