In a chilling historical twist, the wife of Stockton Rush, CEO of OceanGate and pilot of the missing Titan submersible, is related to victims of the ‘Titanic’ sinking. Wendy Rush, the great-great-granddaughter of Isidor and Ida Straus, prominent first-class passengers on the ill-fated Titanic voyage, finds herself inextricably linked to a maritime mystery that mirrors her ancestors’ tragic fate.
Stockton Rush launched OceanGate in 2009 to fulfill his lifelong dream of exploration, a dream rooted not in the stars, but in the ocean’s abyss. The company’s mission statement reflects Rush’s belief in the sea as the future of humanity, asserting that mankind’s survival, if the Earth’s surface becomes uninhabitable, lies beneath the ocean waves.
OceanGate operates three submersibles, including the Titan, conducting deep-sea exploration and research. A seat on the eight-day Titanic mission, where passengers traverse more than 13,000 feet below the ocean’s surface to witness the remains of the legendary ship, costs $250,000 per person.
But beneath the exhilaration of exploration and the lure of extreme tourism lurks the reality of high risks and safety concerns. Rush, known for his skepticism of regulations that might hinder innovation, has faced criticism for ignoring safety warnings and concerns raised by his employees.
The Titan, OceanGate’s latest submersible, and the vessel in which Rush is currently missing, is noted for its unconventional design elements, such as the use of a video-game controller for navigation. These design choices have raised eyebrows, particularly in the light of recent events.
Wendy Rush’s connection to the Titanic tragedy is a poignant part of this unfolding narrative. Her great-great-grandparents, Isidor and Ida Straus, were not only first-class passengers on the Titanic but were also renowned for their decision to stay together as the ship sank.
Isidor Straus, a co-owner of the department store R.H. Macy, refused a lifeboat seat, insisting that all women and children be evacuated first. Ida Straus, also offered a seat in a lifeboat, chose to stay with her husband on the sinking ship. The couple was last seen together on the deck of the Titanic.
Wendy Rush, apart from being OceanGate’s director of communications, was an active participant in the company’s operations. She has embarked on three previous journeys to the Titanic site. Now, she finds herself waiting for news about her husband, who was lost during an expedition to the same shipwreck that claimed her ancestors more than a century ago.
Shortly before noon on the east coast Thursday, the U.S. Coast Guard released a significant update in the frantic search for a missing submersible near the wreckage of the ‘Titanic.’ The news was first shared on Twitter by the Coast Guard’s Northeast division in a terse message.
A debris field was discovered within the search area by an ROV near the Titanic. Experts within the unified command are evaluating the information. 1/2
— USCGNortheast (@USCGNortheast) June 22, 2023
The update comes just hours after the estimated oxygen supply on the submersible ran out this morning. However, with a debris field now discovered, some are wondering whether an implosion of the sub had taken the lives of its passengers much sooner than today. Blockchain investor Mario Nawfal shared the news as well, opining that the report “confirms” that the ship’s carbon fiber hull “imploded.”
“This confirms what we’ve discussed for 8 hours yesterday: The carbon fibre hull of the submersible IMPLODED, killing everyone onboard instantly,” Nawfal wrote.
“The bad news: Everyone is unfortunately dead. Our hearts go to their friends and family. The ‘good’ news: While this isn’t really good news, it’s a relief, because the implosion means everyone onboard died instantly instead of suffocating slowly over days.”
UPDATE: A friend of multiple passengers on the sub has confirmed that the debris found is part of the OceanGate ‘Titan’ vessel:
This is a developing story and will be updated. Stay tuned for more.