Bobby Bajram: More than a mountaineer
Aiming higher than most, 56-year-old Bobby Bajram has set himself the ultimate challenge of conquering the 8840-metre summit of Mount Everest; a lifelong aspiration that not even his multiple sclerosis (MS) can get in the way of.
Despite doctors advising that the climb would be a “likely fatal outcome” for Bobby, he is determined to prove that, disability or not, nothing can stand in the way of achieving your dreams.
“I’m doing this to say to everyone with a disability or anyone that’s just having a bad day, you’ve just got to try your best and have a crack,” Bobby said.
At just 13 years old, Bobby was the youngest Australian to be diagnosed with MS. His condition finds him in 24/7 pain as well as legally blind and he can spend months at a time confined to a wheelchair.
In a situation that would warrant a glass-half-empty approach, Bobby embraced the reality of living with MS and promised himself that one day he would walk to the top of the world - a dream that will make history as the first Australian with a severe disability to do so.
“I can die very quickly, but this keeps me alive,” he said. “My motivation is that if I don’t do this, I’m dead - my life is literally on the line.”
Having already summited three of the world’s highest peaks, including Mount Kala Patthar, Mera Peak and Mount East Lobuche, Bobby has his sights set on a March 2025 Everest climb.
Due to his condition, he requires a specialised support team of medical practitioners and mountaineers to accompany him, which he is raising money for through a GoFundMe campaign.
A testament to his unwavering positivity, Bobby is confident of an Everest success despite the difficulties that lie ahead.
“I know I’ll make it,” he told CBD News.
“If I get sick, the whole expedition stops for four to five days until I can recover at Base Camp, then back up we go.”
In preparation for the climb, Bobby follows a strict gym routine with help from his friends at True Fitness. He has also been training with Aligned Leisure in the pool with the hopes of competing in the 100-metre freestyle at the 2026 Para Commonwealth Games, prior to the Victorian government’s recent withdrawal.
Bobby’s infectious energy and passion for “just giving it a go” proves that the sky’s the limit when it comes to what he can achieve.
“You can do anything you put your mind to, if you want to do it,” Bobby said.
When it comes to disability, we’re just one group of people wanting to have a fair go.
The City of Melbourne has been one of Bobby’s biggest supporters, with Lord Mayor Sally Capp passing on a council flag for him to carry up the mountain alongside the Australian flag.
Rather than funding the expedition through sponsors, Bobby hopes that his journey to the top of the world can be an example of “the community banding together” to show its support for people with disabilities.
“The point of me going is to represent everybody,” he said.
“When I put those flags on the summit of Mount Everest, all of Australia will have helped me get there.” •
To help Bobby reach his goal, you can donate here: gofundme.com/f/bobby-for-everest
Photography: Maria Vasileva.