Who's on board the missing Titanic sub? From British billionaire to French explorer and Pakistani businessman

21 June 2023, 10:42 | Updated: 21 June 2023, 11:22

Hamish Hardwood, Paul-Henri Nargeolet, Shahaza Darwood and Stockton Rush are all missing
Hamish Hardwood, Paul-Henri Nargeolet, Shahaza Darwood and Stockton Rush are all missing. Picture: Social media

By Kit Heren

The Titan submersible has gone missing while attempting a trip deep into the Atlantic Ocean to visit the wreckage of the Titanic - but who is on board the submarine? Here's a look at the passengers on board including Hamish Harding.

Rescuers are currently facing a race against time to find the Titanic submersible, thought to be 12,500 feet below the surface, and retrieve its five passengers, before their four-day oxygen supply runs out on Thursday.

In the latest update on the submersible, which is owned by OceanGate Expeditions, sounds of banging has been detected on sonar which indicates signs of life.

The banging, which came at 30-minute intervals, was picked up on sonar by a Canadian aircraft, leaked US government messages show.

"My confidence level has been increased by an order of magnitude since these reports have come in of banging," Mr Owen told LBC's Nick Ferrari at Breakfast.

Read more: Titanic sub's last chance: Vital rescue equipment flown in on US cargo planes ahead of 15-hour race across Atlantic

Read more: Titan submersible company warned years ago by experts that 'experimental' approach could lead to 'catastrophe'

Five passengers are on board the Titanic sub, including Hamish Harding - a Guinness World Record holder, Paul-Henri Nargeolet - a Titanic explorer and Shahzada Darwood - A UK-based Pakistani businessman.

Here's everything you need to know about the passengers on board the missing Titanic sub.

Hamish Harding wearing a medal and suit at a red carpet event
Hamish Harding is one of the missing passengers on board the Titanic sub that's gone missing. Picture: Getty

Hamish Harding

Hamish Harding holds three Guinness World Records - one for travelling to the deepest part of the ocean for the longest time on a single dive – diving for a total of four hours and 15 minutes.

Mr Harding also holds another for the fastest circumnavigation of the earth across the north and south poles, achieving the feat in 46 hours, 40 minutes and 22 seconds in July 2019 and a third for the longest distance traversed at full ocean depth by a crewed vessel.

He also took part in Blue Origin’s fifth human spaceflight, organised by Jeff Bezos.

In 2016, he accompanied Buzz Aldrin to the south pole when the former astronaut became the oldest person to reach the south pole at age 86.

Outside of world records Mr Harding is the founder and chairman of Action Aviation. Set up in 2004, Action Aviation is an international sales company in business aviation offering aircraft brokerage, management and financing.

He was also a previous recipient of the award “living legend of aviation” at the European Living Legends of Aviation Awards, for his contributions to aviation and aerospace.

The 58-year-old also used to be an International Space Station commander.

Mr Harding is based in the United Arab Emirates and has a wife married called Linda. He has two sons named Rorry and Giles, a stepdaughter named Lauren and a stepson named Brian.

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Paul-Henri Nargeolet wearing a blue polo top looking directly into the camera
Paul-Henri Nargeolet has been described as 'Titanic's greatest explorer'. Picture: 2 Seas Agency

Paul-Henri Nargeolet

Described by OcenGate as "Titanic's greatest explorer", Paul-Henri Nargeolet is is the director of underwater research for RMS Titanic, Inc. which organises expeditions to the wreck to recover artefacts.

Former naval officer Mr Nargeolet has led several expeditions to the Titanic himself, and has completed 35 dives in the submersible.

He has supervised the recovery of 5,000 artefacts, including a 20-tonne section of the ship's hull.

Born in Chamonix, in France, Mr Nargeolet spent his early years in Africa with his parents.

He spent 22 years in the French navy, rising to the rank of commander. Mr Nargeolet later joined the French institute for Sea Exploration, specialising in deep sea exploration.

He was married to American newsreader Michelle Marsh until her death in 2017.

Read more: Race to find Titanic wreck tourist sub with British billionaire on board after it vanished at sea

Read more:Titanic's hidden treasures: Lost gold necklace with tooth of megalodon shark discovered in wreckage 111 years on

Shahzada Darwood smiling profile picture wearing a blue tie and shirt
Shahzada Darwood is thought to have a staggering net worth. Picture: WEF

Shahzada and Sulaiman Darwood

Shahzada Darwood is a UK-based Pakistani businessman, who is a vice-chairman of his family business - the Dawood Hercules Corporation, a fertiliser, energy and chemicals conglomerate. He is thought to be one of the richest men in Pakistan.

Mr Darwood is a trustee at the SETI Insti­tute, which looks for extraterrestrial life, and a member of the global advisory board of King Charles' charity Prince’s Trust International.

He has two children, 19-year-old Sulaiman and Alina, and a wife, Christine. Sulaiman is on board with him.

"We are very grateful for the concern being shown by our colleagues and friends and would like to request everyone to pray for their safety," his family said in a statement.

Stockton Rush
Stockton Rush was in charge of the missing Titanic sub. Picture: OceanGate

Stockton Rush

Stockton Rush is CEO and founder of OceanGate, which operates the Titan, the submersible that has gone missing.

OceanGate's business is to provide crewed submersible services for researchers and explorers to travel deep into the ocean.

Mr Rush trained as a pilot and became the youngest jet transport rated pilot in the world at the age of 19.

He is also a founder and member of the board of trustees of non-profit organisation OceanGate Foundation, which helps to make new advances in marine science, history, and archaeology.

OceanGate says its "expeditions, to depths approaching 4,000 meters (13,000 feet), provide rare opportunities for citizen explorers to observe the mysteries of the deep sea and expand our understanding of our home, earth, the blue planet."