Family of Brit Titan passenger Hamish Harding pay tribute to 'living legend' as relatives of crew share their agony | The Sun

Family of Brit Titan passenger Hamish Harding pay tribute to 'living legend' as relatives of crew share their agony | The Sun

June 23, 2023

BRIT passenger Hamish Harding has been remembered as a "living legend" as tributes poured in from relatives of the Titan crew.

It follows OceanGate's devastating announcement on Thursday that the group of five perished after the vessel suffered a "catastrophic implosion".

Passengers Stockton Rush, billionaire Hamish Harding, Paul-Henri Nargeolet, Shahzada Dawood and his 19-year-old son Suleman all passed away during the tragic incident.

And since the tragic revelation, Hamish's family shared a heartbreaking tribute to the "dedicated father" who "lived his life for his family, his business and for the next adventure".

The statement, released by Harding's company Action Aviation, read: "Today we are united in grief with the other families who have also lost their loved ones.

"Hamish Harding was a loving husband to his wife and a dedicated father to his two sons, whom he loved deeply.


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"To his team in Action Aviation, he was a guide, an inspiration, a support, and a living legend.

"He was one of a kind and we adored him. He was a passionate explorer – whatever the terrain – who lived his life for his family, his business and for the next adventure.

"What he achieved in his lifetime was truly remarkable and if we can take any small consolation from this tragedy, it's that we lost him doing what he loved.

"He will leave a gap in our lives that can never be filled. We know that Hamish would have been immensely proud to see how nations, experts, industry colleagues and friends came together for the search and we extend our heartfelt thanks for all their efforts.

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"On behalf of the Harding family and Action Aviation, we would like to politely request privacy at this incredibly difficult time."

The family of Mr Dawood and Suleman, 19, also shared their heartache.

They said: "It is with profound grief that we announce the passing of Shahzada and Suleman Dawood.

"Our beloved sons were aboard OceanGate’s Titan submersible that perished underwater.

"Please continue to keep the separated souls and our family in your prayers during this difficult period of mourning.

"We are truly grateful to all those involved in the rescue operations.

"Their untiring efforts were a source of strength for us during this time.

"We are also indebted to our friends, family, colleagues, and well-wishers from all over the world who have stood by us during our hour of need.

"The immense love and support we receive continues to help us.

"We extend our heartfelt condolences to the families of the other passengers on the Titan submersible.

"Details of their final rites in this world will be announced soon."

It comes after Suleman's aunty told NBC News the teenager had expressed hesitation before embarking on the daring adventure.

Azmeh Dawood said her nephew had informed relatives that he "wasn't very up for it" and felt "terrified" about the trip.

Nevertheless, the 19-year-old took part in the voyage because the trip fell over Father's Day weekend and he was reportedly eager to please his dad.

Azmeh said: "I am thinking of Suleman, who is 19, in there, just perhaps gasping for breath… It's been crippling, to be honest.

"I feel disbelief.

"It's an unreal situation."

The statement released by OceanGate yesterday afternoon confirmed the five crew were dead.

It read: "We now believe that our CEO Stockton Rush, Shahzada Dawood and his son Suleman Dawood, Hamish Harding, and Paul-Henri Nargeolet, have sadly been lost.

"These men were true explorers who shared a distinct spirit of adventure, and a deep passion for exploring and protecting the world’s oceans.

"Our hearts are with these five souls and every member of their families during this tragic time. We grieve the loss of life and joy they brought to everyone they knew."

Richard Garriott, president of adventure group The Explorers Club, said: "Our hearts are broken. I am so sorry to have to share this tragic news.

"Our friends and fellow Explorers Club members Hamish Harding and Paul-Henri Nargeolet are lost, along with Stockton Rush, Shahzada Dawood and his son Suleman, while trying to reach the RMS Titanic.

"Hamish Harding is a dear friend to me personally and to The Explorers Club. He holds several world records and has continued to push dragons off maps both in person and through supporting expeditions and worthy causes. 

"Paul-Henri was elected to the Club in 2001 and was one of the foremost experts on submersible expeditions to the Titanic. 

"They were both drawn to explore, like so many of us, and did so in the name of meaningful science for the betterment of mankind. 

"While we did not know Shahzada Dawood and his son Suleman personally, their desire to explore as a family would have led them to our doorstep at some point in their futures, where we would have welcomed them.

"Their memories will be a blessing and will continue to inspire us in the name of science and exploration."

Foreign secretary James Cleverly also paid tribute to the five people who were on board the Titan.

He described it as "tragic news" and said the government was closely supporting the families affected.

Rear Admiral of the US Coast Guard John Mauger – who is leading the search for the remains of the Titan – said the sub suffered a "catastrophic loss of the pressure chamber".

Asked about recovering the bodies, he admitted the sea floor was an "incredibly unforgiving, incredibly complex environment".

He added: "We will continue to work and search the area down there  but I don’t have an answer for prospects at this time."

Rescue experts say the debris of the Titan sub was found more than 650ft from the bow of the Titanic wreck.

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