A British student who went missing during the Nepal earthquake while trekking on his gap year has been confirmed dead.
Matthew Carapiet, 23, was in the remote Langtang valley when the magnitude 7.8 earthquake hit on 25 April, triggering a large avalanche.
“It is with great sadness that we can confirm the death of our son Matthew following the earthquake in Nepal,” his family said in a statement today.
“Matt was touring Asia in a gap year before planning to continue his architecture studies in the autumn.
“He spoke to us regularly about how much he was enjoying his travels and we know he was doing something that he loved. He had been trekking in Nepal for two weeks before the earthquake.
“Matt is loved by his family and friends who all have countless memories of how kind, happy and caring he was. He made a huge impression on the lives of everyone he met.”
The statement added that the family was going through a “very difficult time” and asked for privacy to grieve.
Just two days ago, relatives said they were “holding on to hope” on a Facebook page called Bring Matt Carapiet Home, which was set up after he went missing.
Following efforts by the Foreign and Commonwealth Office (FCO) Office to trace him using helicopter searches, Gurkhas were dropped into the Langtang Village area to search for the student last week.
In the days after the disaster, a friend of the family in Bearsted, Kent, said they felt “frustrated” and let down by the FCO’s efforts.
“They are going through absolute hell at the moment - there is no other way to describe it,” Rob Bailey added.
Another British national, who lived in Hong Kong, was also killed in the earthquake and others are still missing.
Nearly 100 more British Army Gurkhas arrived in Nepal to help with the relief effort, the Government said today.
It brings the total number of British military personnel sent to the region in the two weeks since the devastating earthquake to around 300.
Around 7,800 people died and millions were displaced when the earthquake rocked Nepal and surrounding countries, triggering avalanches and mudslides and destroying more than half a million homes.
Join our new commenting forum
Join thought-provoking conversations, follow other Independent readers and see their replies