#NepalQuake: SA survivors recount harrowing struggle for survival

Mike Sherman & Kate Ahrends were stuck in Langtang after a 7.8 magnitude earthquake hit Nepal last week.

South Africans Mike Sherman & Kate Ahrends after being rescued from Langtang, Nepal following a deadly earthquake. Picture: Mia Lindeque/EWN.

KATHMANDU - South African earthquake survivors Mike Sherman and Kate Ahrends have given chilling accounts of how they thought every day was going to be their last and feared going to sleep while in Nepal.

The couple were stuck in Langtang for several days following a 7.8 magnitude deadly earthquak e that killed more than 7,000 people.

Sherman and Ahrends held hands as they faced the media for the first time since being rescued from the mountains.

The two recalled chilling accounts of how they hid behind a large rock hearing landslides coming closer.

Ahrends described the moment she saw the South African rescuers for the first time.

"It was the most massive relief."

She said they will never take life for granted again.

WATCH: SA couple share their Nepal experience

Sherman and Ahrends said although they're thankful for surviving the deadly earthquake, they feel that it's almost 'selfish to be grateful' while many others are still buried in inaccessible areas.

They pair also recalled how a Dutch survivor proposed to his girlfriends a day after the quake.


Nepalese doctors have described how they instinctively wanted to run away from the hospital building during the earthquake but had to rescue paraplegic and other patients from the top levels.

Most of the medical staff attending to amputations and fractured limbs in Kathmandu's new hospital are part of South African aid group Gift of the Givers who are trying to save lives after some jumped off buildings while walls fell on others.

A week after the 7.8 magnitude quake, attention has now shifted to medical care instead of search and rescue.

WATCH: Glimmers of hope from #NepalQuake

Linen and medical clothes lie are draped over the staircase rail at the Kirtipur Hospital already battling to attend to double its normal amount of patients.

The hospital director said, "Not many ambulances are there. The patients were brought in by other people carrying them, using their scooters as ambulances. They were helping each other."

Nepalese doctors have praised the Gift of the Givers Foundation for their help and skills saying that without them, they would not have coped.