Bodies of missing climbers discovered in Himalayas 30 years after disappearance

Kristinn Runarsson and Thorsteinn Gudjonsson in Nepal.

(CNN)A Scottish mountaineer who spent weeks searching for two friends who disappeared in the Himalayas more than 30 years ago has spoken of his relief after their remains were finally found.

The bodies of Icelanders Kristinn Runarsson and Thorsteinn Gudjonsson were discovered at the bottom of a glacier by an American climber last month, according to a report from the Church of Scotland.
Climber Steve Aisthorpe, a Church official, was with the two men during an October 1988 expedition to climb Pumori, a challenging 7,161 meter (23,494 foot) mountain near Everest, and said the discovery had united those who knew the pair and had brought closure.
    "The discovery of the remains of Thorsteinn and Kristinn after so many years has inevitably brought many emotions to the surface for all who knew and loved these wonderful guys," he said.
      "But it has also brought people together and, I pray, will help with greater closure and, in time, peace."
      He said the bodies had likely been brought down the mountain by the retreating glacier. They were taken to Kathmandu for cremation and the ashes returned to Iceland.
      Aisthorpe, a mission development worker, was forced to abandon his own summit attempt when he fell ill but encouraged the pair to continue without him.
      He said that when he returned to their camp he felt a sense of foreboding.
      "As I worked my way upwards, I desperately hoped that Kristinn and Thorsteinn had descended safely and were now lying in their sleeping bags in the tiny red tent camp," he said.