Explorer dies just before he was about to finish solo trek across Antarctica

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British explorer Henry Worsley died this weekend, during his attempt to become the first person to ever cross Antarctica alone, only 30 miles from the end of his journey.

He had already traveled more than 900 miles over 71 days.

The 55-year-old died from "complete organ failure" — he appeared to have bacterial peritonitis, an infection on his abdomen, and was severely exhausted and dehydrated. Worsley had called for help, stuck in a blizzard, and was airlifted to Chile. He sent one last message before leaving the cold: "The 71 days alone on the Antarctic with over 900 statute miles covered and a gradual grinding down of my physical endurance finally took its toll today, and it is with sadness that I report it is journey's end — so close to my goal."

See Worsley meeting with Prince William this past October:

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Henry Worsley, British explorer, with Prince William
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Explorer dies just before he was about to finish solo trek across Antarctica
Britain's Prince William, Duke of Cambridge, (L) and polar explorer Henry Worsley, pose with a Union flag at Kensington Palace in London on October 19, 2015. Worsley will undertake the 2015/16 Shackleton solo challenge starting in November, and attempting to undertake Sir Ernest Shackleton's unfinished journey to the South Pole from the Weddell Sea. AFP PHOTO / JOHN STILLWELL / POOL (Photo credit should read JOHN STILLWELL/AFP/Getty Images)
Britain's Prince William, Duke of Cambridge, (L) talks with polar explorer Henry Worsley at Kensington Palace in London on October 19, 2015. Worsley will undertake the 2015/16 Shackleton solo challenge starting in November, and attempting to undertake Sir Ernest Shackleton's unfinished journey to the South Pole from the Weddell Sea. AFP PHOTO / JOHN STILLWELL / POOL (Photo credit should read JOHN STILLWELL/AFP/Getty Images)
Britain's Prince William, Duke of Cambridge, (L) looks at a map of Antarctica as polar explorer Henry Worsley, shows him the route to the South Pole that he plans to take, at Kensington Palace in London on October 19, 2015. Worsley will undertake the 2015/16 Shackleton solo challenge starting in November, and attempting to undertake Sir Ernest Shackleton's unfinished journey to the South Pole from the Weddell Sea. AFP PHOTO / JOHN STILLWELL / POOL (Photo credit should read JOHN STILLWELL/AFP/Getty Images)
Britain's Prince William, Duke of Cambridge, (L) talks with polar explorer Henry Worsley at Kensington Palace in London on October 19, 2015. Worsley will undertake the 2015/16 Shackleton solo challenge starting in November, and attempting to undertake Sir Ernest Shackleton's unfinished journey to the South Pole from the Weddell Sea. AFP PHOTO / JOHN STILLWELL / POOL (Photo credit should read JOHN STILLWELL/AFP/Getty Images)
LONDON, ENGLAND - OCTOBER 19: Prince William, Duke of Cambridge poses with Henry Worsley, who will attempt the 2015/16 Shackleton solo challenge where the Polar explorer will be attempting to undertake Sir Ernest Shackleton's unfinished journey to the South Pole from the Weddell Sea at Kensington Palace on October 19, 2015 in London, England (Photo by John Stillwell/WPA Pool/Getty Images)
LONDON, ENGLAND - OCTOBER 19: Prince William, Duke of Cambridge talks with Henry Worsley, who will attempt the 2015/16 Shackleton solo challenge where the Polar explorer will be attempting to undertake Sir Ernest Shackleton's unfinished journey to the South Pole from the Weddell Sea at Kensington Palace on October 19, 2015 in London, England (Photo by John Stillwell/WPA Pool/Getty Images)
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Many people who were friends with the explorer sent off sad messages on Twitter.

Besides trying to become the first person to ever trek across the Antarctic, the ex-Army man, who leaves behind a wife and two children, was also trying to raise money for wounded soldiers and veterans — he managed to raise $140,000.

Back in October, before beginning the trip, he told the BBC, "There is no black art to driving one ski in front of the other. What is driving me on is the money for these wounded soldiers."





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