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Billionaire sent tragic final text before he was killed in Titan sub implosion

Billionaire sent tragic final text before he was killed in Titan sub implosion

Hamish Harding was one of five on board

It’s been over eight months since the Titan submersible disaster in June 2023.

Back on 16 June, a group had embarked on a unique expedition from Newfoundland, Canada, to see the wreck of the Titanic. However, after just 90 minutes into the descent, OceanGate lost contact with Titan and a search began.

It was later confirmed that the five men on board had sadly lost their lives, with the US Coast Guard saying the sub had a ‘catastrophic implosion’.

Earlier this week, a two-part documentary aired exploring the tragedy.

Channel 5’s The Titan Sub Disaster: Minute by Minute included never-heard-before audio recorded by the Canadian Air Force, who heard the so-called ‘banging’ from day one of their search.

Included in that missing group of passengers was Hamish Harding.

The billionaire had taken part in a variety of otherworldly explorations before boarding the Titan, such as visiting Challenger Deep, the deepest spot in the ocean.

And before he was killed in the sub’s implosion, he sent a tragic final text to his mate.

As the search mission was underway for the missing Titan, Harding’s friend and retired astronaut Colonel Terry Virts appeared on Good Morning Britain.

He said his pal had sent him one last text message before setting off on the journey to the Titanic.

Hamish Harding.
Victoria Sirakova/Getty Images

"We don't really talk about risks, it's known," Virts said. "He understood the risks for sure, there's no doubt about that.

"The last text I got was, 'Hey, we're headed out tomorrow, it looks good, the weather's been bad so they've been waiting for this'.

"He went down to the deepest part of the ocean, set a few world records at the Mariana Trench and we talked quite a bit about the risks and the different things that they were going to be able to do.

“So he was very excited about it."

According to Dr Dale Molé, the former director of undersea medicine and radiation health, the Titan’s implosion would have took place so quickly that the group onboard wouldn't have even realised what was happening.

He told the Daily Mail: “It would have been so sudden, that they wouldn't even have known that there was a problem, or what happened to them.

“It's like being here one minute, and then the switch is turned off. You're alive one millisecond, and the next millisecond you're dead.”

The Titan submersible which was destroyed.
OceanGate/Becky Kagan Schott

A timeline of the Titan submersible disaster:

The Titan loses contact with support vessel

The Polar Prince loses contact with the Titan around one hour and 45 minutes into its descent on 18 June. A few hours after the submersible was supposed to resurface, the US Coast Guard received a report of an overdue submersible.

Search operation is launched

The US Coast Guard launch a large-scale operation on 19 June, 2023, when the vessel fails to resurface or make contact almost 24 hours on.

'Banging noises' are detected

Two days on from the Titan's disappearance on 21 June, 2023, sonar crews taking part in the search pick up 'banging noises', giving false hope that the passengers are still alive.

The Titan's oxygen supply 'runs out'

At 1pm E.T on 22 June, 2023, the submersible's 96-hour oxygen supply is predicted to have ran out, cementing fears for the crew onboard.

A 'debris field' is discovered, leading to the realisation of a 'catastrophic implosion'

The US Coast Guard confirms the Titan was destroyed by a ‘catastrophic implosion’ - a result of both enormous water pressure and failed materials - with the loss of all five people aboard.

The Titan Sub Disaster: Minute by Minute is now available to stream on My5.

Featured Image Credit: Victoria Sirakova/Getty Images/PA

Topics: Science, Titanic, Titan Submersible, TV and Film