5/11/04 – The Swiss climber Elie Chevieux was found murdered in Kabul, Afghanistan, on May 9. Chevieux, 31, winner and finalist in many international climbing competitions from 1991 to 1997, was brutally murdered with stones in a public park, along with an unidentified friend. The incident made the international wires Sunday, but Chevieux’s identity was unknown at that time. Details of the attack are not known, and it is unclear whether the murder was criminal or political in nature. Chevieux, a passionate photographer, was on his way back home after traveling in Russia, Siberia, Japan, India, Nepal, Pakistan, and finally Afghanistan.
Chevieux’s climbing accomplishments were many, but he is perhaps best known for his 1995 onsight ascent of Massey Fergusson (5.14a) in the Calanques, France, the first onsight of that grade. His many, many friends in the international climbing community, of course, will remember him for more personal reasons, including his good nature, energy, and humanity.