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Resident reaches new heights

The president and vice president of United Bank’s Pike Division reached new heights this summer as they climbed to the summits of Mount St. Helens and Mount Rainier in Washington state. For vice president William Tuttle of Barnesville, the excursions were his first mountain-climbing experiences. President Bart Key of Pike County added the summits to a list of mountaintops he’s mastered, including Africa’s highest mountain Mount Kilimanjaro, Mount Hood in Oregon, Mount Shasta and Mount Whitney in California. Key also summitted Mt. Rainier in 2009. The two practiced for the extremely physically demanding climbs by carrying 70-pound backpacks up the 26-mile Pine Mountain trail and up and down the Pike County football field bleachers. ’Every ounce we put into training was needed. We trained pretty hard for six months,’ Key said. ‘To go from sea level to 14,409 feet high is tough for anybody so we climbed Mount St. Helens first to spend some time on the mountain and get acclimatized.’

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