JAN MELA : 16-year old disabled reached both Poles

16-year old Polish boy Jan Mela reached the South Pole on December 31st. He completed his journey to both poles in the same year with only one leg and one arm.

Today Marek Kaminski, Wojciech Ostrowski and the youngest team member Jan Mela reached the South Pole. They completed successfully their goal of reaching both poles in one year. This April the small team from Poland already undertook an unique expedition. 15-year old disabled Jan Mela got the chance to overcome the limits of his body and conquered the North Pole together with Marek Kaminski (Polish adventurer and expedition leader). This took place in April of this year and ended with huge success.
Jan is now the youngest polar explorer who has made it to both poles whithin the same year.
For Jan, who has lost his right forearm and his left lower leg during an accident two years ago those expeditions were a tremendous achievement.

They had to walk 188 km In 14 days through the Antarctic ice. Depending on weather conditions, they walked between 4 and 16,3 km a day. During some days the wind rose up to 100 km/h. The temperature lay between minus 25 and minus 30° Celsius.
They had planned to start from Patriot Hills earlier, but due to bad weather conditions they had to postpone their first march 5 days. In order to make sure that they wou! ld reach the Pole in time, they had left some of their equipment on the way. A plane was supposed to collect it later.

During the expedition, the small team celebrated also Christmas together.

The small team is very happy about their success. Especially the now 16-year old Jan has proven once again that almost everything is possible. A few years ago destiny has taken away parts of his leg and arm, put it has also given him the chance of his life to become a polar explorer who has now written history.

Contact Information:

Stephanie Wolf / Marek Kaminski Foundation
ul. Grunwaldzka 212, 80-266 Gdansk , Poland
e-mail: fundacja@gamasan.pl
tel.  +48 58 554 45 22 / fax. +48 58 552 33 15

wbm, 18 January