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A street leading to the Boudhanath Stupa in Kathmandu, Nepal. Many relief workers who have been in Nepal since the April 25 earthquake stopped at the stupa May 9, 2015, on their way out of town.

A street leading to the Boudhanath Stupa in Kathmandu, Nepal. Many relief workers who have been in Nepal since the April 25 earthquake stopped at the stupa May 9, 2015, on their way out of town. (Seth Robson/Stars and Stripes)

A street leading to the Boudhanath Stupa in Kathmandu, Nepal. Many relief workers who have been in Nepal since the April 25 earthquake stopped at the stupa May 9, 2015, on their way out of town.

A street leading to the Boudhanath Stupa in Kathmandu, Nepal. Many relief workers who have been in Nepal since the April 25 earthquake stopped at the stupa May 9, 2015, on their way out of town. (Seth Robson/Stars and Stripes)

A gate beside the Boudhanath Stupa in Kathmandu, Nepal, on Saturday, May 9, 2015. Relief workers spent time May 9 touring the city as they prepared to leave town.

A gate beside the Boudhanath Stupa in Kathmandu, Nepal, on Saturday, May 9, 2015. Relief workers spent time May 9 touring the city as they prepared to leave town. (Seth Robson/Stars and Stripes)

The Boudhanath Stupa in Kathmandu, Nepal, is known as the holiest Tibetan Buddhist temple outside of Tibet.

The Boudhanath Stupa in Kathmandu, Nepal, is known as the holiest Tibetan Buddhist temple outside of Tibet. (Seth Robson/Stars and Stripes)

Buddhist art on sale beside Boudhanath Stupa in Kathmandu, Nepal, on May 9, 2015.

Buddhist art on sale beside Boudhanath Stupa in Kathmandu, Nepal, on May 9, 2015. (Seth Robson/Stars and Stripes)

A young Buddhist monk passes the Boudhanath Stupa in Kathmandu, Nepal,  on May 9, 2015. The Tibetan temple was a popular destination for earthquake relief workers on their way out of town.

A young Buddhist monk passes the Boudhanath Stupa in Kathmandu, Nepal, on May 9, 2015. The Tibetan temple was a popular destination for earthquake relief workers on their way out of town. (Seth Robson/Stars and Stripes)

A Buddhist woman rests beside Boudhanath Stupa in Kathmandu, Nepal, Saturday, May 9, 2015.

A Buddhist woman rests beside Boudhanath Stupa in Kathmandu, Nepal, Saturday, May 9, 2015. (Seth Robson/Stars and Stripes)

Buddhist art decorates the Boudhanath Stupa in Kathmandu, Nepal, on May 9, 2015. Relief workers spent time on May 9 touring the city as they prepared to leave town.

Buddhist art decorates the Boudhanath Stupa in Kathmandu, Nepal, on May 9, 2015. Relief workers spent time on May 9 touring the city as they prepared to leave town. (Seth Robson/Stars and Stripes)

A giant prayer wheel inside a Buddhist temple in Kathmandu, Nepal.

A giant prayer wheel inside a Buddhist temple in Kathmandu, Nepal. (Seth Robson/Stars and Stripes)

Buddhist art decorates the Boudhanath Stupa in Kathmandu, Nepal. The stupa is the holiest Tibetan Buddhist temple outside of Tibet.

Buddhist art decorates the Boudhanath Stupa in Kathmandu, Nepal. The stupa is the holiest Tibetan Buddhist temple outside of Tibet. (Seth Robson/Stars and Stripes)

Nepalese Buddhists light candles at the Boudhanath Stupa in Kathmandu on May 9, 2015.

Nepalese Buddhists light candles at the Boudhanath Stupa in Kathmandu on May 9, 2015. (Seth Robson/Stars and Stripes)

KATHMANDU, Nepal — Many of the foreign relief workers who poured into Nepal following the devastating April 25 earthquake were on their way home over the weekend.

Medical personnel still in Nepal said people coming into their clinics Friday had common health issues rather than injuries sustained in the magnitude-7.9 quake.

Glenn Wright, a major in the Air Force Reserve who deployed to Nepal with a team brought in by the U.S. Agency for International Development, said search-and-rescue work was winding down late last week. The U.S. personnel uncovered one survivor — a 15-year-old boy found several days after the earthquake.

Nepal’s buildings are mostly made of brick without reinforced masonry, so when they collapsed, there were few spaces for anyone to survive, Wright said.

A yoga practitioner back home in Los Angeles, the Iraq and Afghanistan veteran said he’s been learning about the local culture and religion in Kathmandu.

“I’m a Christian, but all of us can find our own path,” he said.

For many of the relief workers, that path led to the Boudhanath, a 118-foot-high Buddhist stupa on the outskirts of Kathmandu, where they spent their last hours in Nepal shopping for souvenirs and sipping coffee.

Kenichi Kubo came to the Boudhanath after abandoning his attempt to climb Makalu, the world’s fifth-highest mountain. The 65-year-old mountaineer from Yokohama, Japan, was camping on the 27,766-foot peak and preparing for a summit ascent when the earthquake struck.

Kubo and other mountaineers were concerned that a glacier on the mountain might break apart and destroy their camp, and they voted to abandon the expedition, he said.

robson.seth@stripes.com Twitter:@SethRobson1

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Seth Robson is a Tokyo-based reporter who has been with Stars and Stripes since 2003. He has been stationed in Japan, South Korea and Germany, with frequent assignments to Iraq, Afghanistan, Haiti, Australia and the Philippines.
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