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‘Presumed human remains’ found from wreckage of Titan sub | World News

Presumed human remains have been recovered from the wreckage of the Titan submersible, the US Coast Guard has said.

It comes after debris from the craft was brought ashore earlier on Wednesday.

Five men died, including three British citizens, when the submersible is believed to have suffered a catastrophic implosion while attempting to view the wreck of the Titanic.

In a statement, the US Coast Guard said: “United States medical professionals will conduct a formal analysis of presumed human remains that have been carefully recovered within the wreckage at the site of the incident.”

At a previous news conference on Sunday, officials said investigators looking into the tragedy had been “taking all precautions” in case they found bodies on the sea floor.

A frantic search and rescue operation commenced on 18 June after the vessel lost communication with its mother ship, the Polar Prince, an hour and 45 minutes into the two-hour descent to the wreckage.

The vessel reported missing eight hours after communication was lost.

But the rescue mission ended five days later when pieces of debris were found about 487m from the Titanic wreckage.

The three British citizens on board were billionaire Hamish Harding, and businessman Shahzada Dawood and his 19-year-old son Suleman.

Shahzada’s wife said on Tuesday that the pair were “best friends” who “belonged together”.

Titanic expert Paul-Henri Nargeolet and the chief executive of OceanGate, the company that owned the submersible, Stockton Rush, were also killed in the implosion.

Titan sub implosion: University friends pay tribute to ‘generous and kind person’ | World News

The university friends of the 19-year-old who was killed in the Titan sub implosion have paid tribute to the “incredibly generous and kind person”.

The four friends of Suleman Dawood, who attended Strathclyde University with him and only wanted to give their first names, described him as a supportive and empathetic friend.

Isaac said: “Suleman was not only an incredibly generous and kind person in the conventional sense, he also had a remarkable capacity for giving his time and empathy.

Suleman Dawood
Suleman Dawood

“Suleman embodied everything of a true friendship, he always displayed genuine concern for me and my friends, and was always there to give support.

“His presence in my life was a comforting reminder that someone truly cared for me and would be there with me through anything.

“The world has lost such a wonderful person and my love goes out to the Dawood family.”

Meanwhile, Calum said he has “not met anyone else like Suleman”.

More on Titanic Submersible

“Coming to university was an incredibly daunting and scary part of my life but Suleman, who was one of the first people I met, instantly made me feel welcomed and safe.

“He always found time to listen to you no matter how small it was and offer his thoughts, and was always putting others in front of himself.

New mission to debris site ‘under way’ – Titanic sub search latest updates

“He loved making memories with his friends, whether that be going for a meal, watching a film, or as simple as spending time with him.

“Anyone who knew him knew how much of a generous and down-to-earth person he was, who spoke often and highly of how much he loved and [how] proud he was of his family.

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Titan sub victim seen in footage

“Even writing this it is unthinkable to know that we have lost such an amazing friend.”

Another friend Joe was critical of online comments making assumptions about Suleman – the son of prominent Pakistani billionaire Shahzada Dawood who was also killed in the implosion.

“He was the most helpful person I have ever met and not just with helping with everyday problems.

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“He was incredibly kind and respectful and had great affection for his parents and his sister, which he always spoke very highly of.

“Anyone who knew him, even if it was for a short period of time knows how much of a loss this is for the world.”

Meanwhile, Cody said Suleman was “a good person who cared intently about someone he hadn’t even met” after Suleman approached the homesick student and offered him a sandwich.

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Teen on Titan ‘had a sense this was not okay’

Strathclyde University also offered its condolences to the Dawood family.

Professor Sir Jim McDonald, the principal and vice-chancellor of the university, said: “We are shocked and profoundly saddened by the death of Suleman Dawood and his father in this tragic incident.

Read more:
What happened to the Titan sub
Billionaire offered last minute-price tickets for doomed voyage but pulled out over schedule clash

“The entire Strathclyde community offers our deepest condolences to the Dawood family and all those affected by this terrible accident.

Earlier, Suleman’s high school paid tribute to the former student who “embodied the true spirit of exploration”.

Suleman’s aunt said he had been “terrified” before the trip, but had gone along as a Father’s Day present.

Titan submersible: Student, 19, killed was ‘terrified’ before trip but went as a Father’s Day present | World News

The 19-year-old university student who was killed in the Titan submersible was “terrified” before the trip but went as a Father’s Day present.

Azmeh Dawood, the older sister of businessman Shahzada Dawood, told Sky’s US partner network NBC News that Mr Dawood’s son Suleman was “very not into doing it”.

“Suleman had a sense that this was not okay and he was not very comfortable about doing it,” she said.

Shahzada Dawood and his son Suleman
Shahzada Dawood and his son Suleman (L)

Tributes paid to Titan passengers – live updates

“But it was a Father’s Day thing. It was a bonding experience and he wanted the adventure of a lifetime just like his father did.

“His father wanted it and that was Sule all the way – he’d do anything for anyone.”

Azmeh said the other men who were killed in the “catastrophic implosion” went on the trip “for their own interests” – unlike Suleman.

“They were there for their own reasons. Suleman was just there for [a] Father’s Day bonding experience.

“To be honest, as terrible as it sounds, at least knowing that they wouldn’t have had time to know, they would have just been sat there enjoying themselves and then suddenly boom. It was over. To know that my Sule didn’t feel a moment’s pain.”

Titan submersible in June 2021. File pic: OceanGate Expeditions via AP.
Titan submersible in June 2021. File pic: OceanGate Expeditions via AP

Describing Shahzada as a “precious angel”, she said he was interested in the Titanic from a young age.

“It was his biggest wish, dream, everything,” she said.

“For Shahzada he fulfilled his dream in an extraordinary way.

“He’s become part of the Titanic legend. I mean, in those terms, it could be nothing greater.”

Speaking from her home in Amsterdam, Azmeh said she was glued to news coverage on the Titan.

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‘Two friends of mine are gone’

Questions remain about Titan’s mechanical and safety issues

It was the outcome that nobody wanted but everyone feared.

As time passed in this search, the prospect of a happy ending diminished.

Coordinators had spoken of hope but throughout they had managed expectations – emphasising the scale of the challenge, calling it “enormously complex”, in an offshore environment they described as “incredibly unforgiving”.

So there was a sense of inevitability about the announcement that debris had been found – the Coastguard news conference on Boston’s harbour side was laced with sorrow, if not surprise.

Questions will continue to be asked about the Titan, its condition and suitability to make the trip.

Mechanical and safety issues remain a big part of this story.

There has been much criticism of the vessel’s structure before, during and after it went missing.

OceanGate, the company that owned the Titan, issued a statement in which it described the five on board as “true explorers who shared a distinct spirit of adventure”. No doubt.

No doubt, either, that in pursuit of adventure, they deserved transport they could count on.

Misplaced trust cost them their lives as they sought a glimpse of the Titanic.

Disasters do tend to attract disaster.

Maritime investigators will consider whether, in the case of the Titan, this was one waiting to happen.

“I feel disbelief,” Azmeh said, speaking through sobs. “It’s an unreal situation.”

“I feel like I’ve been caught in a really bad film, with a countdown, but you didn’t know what you’re counting down to.

“I personally have found it kind of difficult to breathe thinking of them.”

Read more:
What happened to the Titan submersible?
Who were the five men on board Titan?

Both British citizens, Shahzada and Suleman Dawood were members of one of Pakistan’s most prominent families.

The family’s namesake business empire, Dawood Hercules Corporation, has investments in agriculture, the health sector and other industries.

Billionaire Shahzada was the vice chairman of the Karachi-based Engro Corporation and an adviser to Prince’s Trust International, a charitable organisation founded by King Charles.

Five men aboard missing Titan sub believed to be dead after ‘catastrophic implosion’ | World News

The five men onboard the missing Titan sub are believed to have died after the vessel suffered a “catastrophic implosion”.

Rear Admiral John Mauger – who led the search – confirmed that a remotely operated vehicle had discovered the nose cone of the lost submersible about 487m (1,600ft) from the bow of the Titanic on the seafloor.

Further debris was found nearby, with Rear Admiral Mauger adding: “In consultation with experts from within unified command, the debris is consistent with the catastrophic loss of the pressure chamber.

“On behalf of US Coast Guard and entire unified command, I offer deepest condolences to the families. I can only imagine what this has been like for them, and I hope this discovery provides some solace during this difficult time.”

Tributes paid to Titan passengers – live updates

Titan submersible in June 2021. File pic: OceanGate Expeditions via AP.
The Titan submersible in June 2021. File pic: OceanGate Expeditions via AP

Minutes before the news conference, OceanGate – which owned the submersible – released a statement that said: “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.”

Sky’s US correspondent James Matthews – who was at the US Coast Guard’s news conference in Boston – asked Rear Admiral Mauger whether any trace of the passengers had been found.

He replied: “This is an incredibly complex operating environment on the seafloor, over two miles beneath the surface. The remote operating vehicle has been searching, and it is highly capable, and we’ve been able to classify parts of the pressure chamber for the Titan submersible.”

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‘Why were you worried about Titan?’

When asked about the prospects for recovering crew members, Rear Admiral Mauger warned, “it is an incredibly unforgiving environment on the seafloor”.

While the debris is consistent with a “catastrophic implosion” of the vessel, he stressed that it is too early to know when this happened – and underwater robots remain on scene to gather information.

“We’ll continue to work and continue to search the area down there, but I don’t have an answer for prospects at this time,” he told reporters.

Carl Hartsville, an expert from the Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution, later added that no debris from the Titanic is based in the area.

While there had been speculation in past news conferences that underwater banging noises heard near the site could be linked to Titan, the Coast Guard said there doesn’t appear to be a connection.

Foreign Secretary James Cleverly said it was “tragic news” that the five men had lost their lives. Billionaire Hamish Harding – as well as businessman Shahzada Dawood and his son Suleman – were British citizens.

“The UK government is closely supporting the families affected and expresses our deepest condolences,” he added.

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‘Two friends of mine are gone’

Early on Thursday morning, it had been announced that a “debris field” had been found at the search site.

David Mearns – a rescue expert who knew two of the five men onboard – had told Sky News earlier that Titan’s landing frame and rear cover had been identified.

Five days have passed since Titan’s passengers embarked on a two-hour dive to see the wreck of the Titanic.

Teams from multiple countries had scoured thousands of square miles looking for the minivan-sized vessel.

On Wednesday, the US Coast Guard had forecast that the vessel’s air supply would run out by 12.08pm UK time today.

Finding the missing submersible in a totally dark environment was likened to discovering a needle in a haystack – and according to experts, even specialist vehicles on the seafloor can only see for a matter of metres.

Commodore David Russell, a former Royal Navy submariner, told Sky News that the evidence suggests that the Titan’s pressure hull failed – and those onboard would have lost their lives instantaneously.

Mr Harding and Mr Nargeolet were members of The Explorers Club – and in a statement, its president Richard Garriott de Cayeux said “our hearts are broken” by the tragedy.

He thanked those involved in the search and rescue effort, adding: “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.

“We’re heartbroken for the families, friends and colleagues of those who were lost. Their memories will be a blessing and will continue to inspire us in the name of science and exploration.”