Family members have paid tribute to Hamish Harding, a British adventurer, billionaire, and aviation magnate who was one of the five persons who perished on a botched underwater mission to the Titanic ruins last week.
Harding was hailed as a devoted father of two and a “living legend” who loved to explore and push the limits of what was possible in a statement released by his family through his business, Action Aviation. The statement reads-
“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.”
— Action Aviation (@actionaviation) June 22, 2023
He achieved a new record in 2021 by traveling to the Mariana Trench’s Challenger Deep, the ocean’s deepest location at 36,000 feet below sea level.
Harding also made record-breaking journeys to the South Pole with the oldest person to reach the pole, Apollo astronaut Buzz Aldrin, and Harding’s son Giles, the youngest.
The businessman in aviation also made the fastest trip around the world above the North and South Poles.
According to retired NASA colonel Terry Virts, who shared the final text he received from Harding, the 58-year-old billionaire wrote: “Hey, we’re headed out tomorrow, it looks good, the weather’s been bad so they’ve been waiting for this.” Virts said his friend undoubtedly “understood the risks” of the dangerous adventure.
The US Coast Guard revealed the “catastrophic implosion” that claimed the lives of all five crew members of the OceanGate Titan submersible mission to the Titanic.
Stockton Rush, the CEO of Oceangate Expeditions, Shahzada Dawood and his son Suleman from Pakistan, and Paul-Henri Nargeolet from France were the other passengers on board the Titan on Sunday when it lost contact with a support ship less than two hours into a 4,000-meter dive to the Titanic shipwreck.
President of the Explorers Club Richard Garriot expressed his sorrow over the passing of members Harding and Nargeolet, describing them as brave individuals who were “drawn to explore” for the “betterment of mankind.”
“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.”
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Who Was British Billionaire Hamish Harding?
Hamish Harding started his profession after earning a natural sciences and chemical engineering degree from Cambridge University.
But his passion for flying ultimately determined his professional choice, leading him to create the aircraft company Action Aviation from a base in the Middle East. He spent most of his working life in Dubai, where he supported the development of several business projects, particularly those involving research and space flight.
In 2004, Action Aviation was established. According to the business’s LinkedIn profile-
“We Provide aircraft and helicopter brokerage services to many owners who wish to sell, as well as buyers in the market for the first time or replacing/upgrading their existing aircraft for something more suitable.”
He was able to pursue some of his loves for adventure after becoming wealthy, especially those related to exploration, aviation, and space exploration.
As a result, he flew around the globe and made many trips to the South Pole, including one in 2016 with former NASA astronaut Buzz Aldrin. He established a world record for diving to the Mariana Trench’s deepest point in a two-person submarine.
Additionally, as part of the Blue Origin project, he participated in the sixth manned spaceflight of the New Shepard rocket. He also worked on a conservation initiative to bring back the cheetah to India.
He was admitted to the exclusive group known as the Living Legend of Aviation Guild in 2022, which also includes celebrities like Kenn Ricci and Tom Cruise.
Just a few days before his 59th birthday, on June 18, he passed away. The four children Mr. Harding had with his wife, Linda Harding, are his only survivors.
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