us.press from.com Fri., Aug.31, 2018
The body of a Soviet woman mummified in ice and looking like a ‘wax doll’ who died with six other climbers on Europe’s highest peak 31 years ago has been found.
A rescue team brought mountaineer Elena Basykina’s (pic above)remains down from 18,510 ft Mount Elbrus in southern Russia.
Her relatives said today they had feared that she had been ‘kidnapped or kept hostage’ in the ‘dangerous’ Caucasus region – but vowed to give her a proper burial.
Her body encased in ice was discovered by a group of tourists on the mountain, reported Russian news agencies.
She was 36 when she died.
Her cousin Evgeny said today that her mother had died after her health worsened when Elena disappeared.
He said: ‘We have been waiting for Elena all these 30-plus years.
‘We tried to guess what could have happened to her – and feared perhaps that she was kidnapped or kept hostage somewhere.
‘It is such a dangerous region.’
Near her body rescuers found her Aeroflot air ticket from Moscow to mountain resort Mineralnye Vody dated 10 April 1987 – when Mikhail Gorbachev ruled the Kremlin before the collapse of the Soviet Union.
Her USSR passport was also located among her possessions.
In 1987, Soviet emergency workers had failed to find any of her group from the Lenin Tourist Club in Moscow who were lost on the mountain when they were hit by an avalanche.
Elena was unmarried and had no children when she died at an altitude of around 13,125 ft on then mountain.
A worker at a Moscow scientific institute, the mountains were ‘the biggest love of her life’, according to Komsomolskaya Pravda newspaper which reported her remains were ‘mummified by ice’ and like a ‘wax doll’ after 31 years on the mountain.
Her best friend Valentina Lapina perished with her, along with five men.