17/07/01 - Day 16
Meet the search team
Rob White reports
Finally, meet the guys who get their feet wet. Not literally of course. Or at least not
Our Search Director DAVID MEARNS of Blue Water Recoveries is one of the most experienced undersea search
professionals in the business. He's been planning this voyage for some 6 years now -
delving into archives and working out all the strategies needed
He's also been making sure - with me - that we have the support of key organisations like the HMS 'Hood' Association, the Royal British Legion, the Royal Naval Association and the Ministry of Defence. They've all been very supportive - particularly of our determination to treat the 'Hood' wreck site with the respect it deserves.
And here's the team that David chose to go deepsea for him - a select group from
Oceaneering Technologies of Maryland.
It's an all-American crew: on the right standing by the
Magellan Remotely Operated Vehicle (ROV) are TROY LAUNAY, with team leader RON SCHMIDT,
DAVID WARFORD and MIKE SCHICK. (The piratical look is the way you do it in deepsea search around here.)
Below, with the Ocean Explorer sidescan sonar are CHUCK HOHING, NEIL CORLISS, ANDY SHERRELL and RICHARD DAILEY. The teams are multi-skilled and can work both vehicles.
Their company and this kit have a distinguished history. To take a few examples, finding the wreck of the giant cargo ship 'Derbyshire', sunk with all hands and without trace in 1980; broadcasting live from the 'Titanic'site; and discovering the tiny 'Liberty Bell' space capsule in 1999. Many of these successes were achieved by the team with us today.
STOP PRESS: We've just put the sonar in the water to start the search for HMS 'Hood'.
Wish us luck!