Eric Soubrier yesterday morning before trekking up Cecil
Peak to place a commemorative stone for his son and his
son's friend, who drowned in Lake Wakatipu three years ago.
Cecil Peak is pictured behind Mr Soubrier, in the distance
across Lake Wakatipu. Photo by Christina McDonald.
''It's in memory of my son,'' Frenchman Eric Soubrier
said as looked towards his backpack which encased a weighty
engraved stone commemorating his son and his son's friend, who
died in 2010.
The stone was ferried with Mr Soubrier across Lake Wakatipu
by Coastguard Queenstown to the base of Cecil Peak at 7.30am
Mr Soubrier was then dropped off with the memorial stone,
which he planned to carry up to a ledge on the peak where his
son Raphael Soubrier (21) and his son's friend Yoann Firdion
(24), both from France, had climbed to take photos.
Raphael and Yoann drowned in the lake while kayaking in rough
conditions exactly three years ago yesterday.
Photos were retrieved from their camera and were used to help
decide where to place the stone.
''I want to find this place and leave this stone so the
mountain will remember these boys.
''[And] it's my way to remember my son. Today is the third
year after [their deaths].''
During a hearing in Queenstown in September 2011, coroner
David Crerar said the boys ''left the safety of the shore too
late and left the call to safety too late'' and described
their degree of preparation and equipment as
The boys had planned a return journey from Queenstown to
Hidden Island in an open double kayak.