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Family reveals teen passenger on vanished submarine was 'terrified' of trip to visit Titanic wreck
Featured Image Credit: Dawood family. OceanGate/Instagram.

Family reveals teen passenger on vanished submarine was 'terrified' of trip to visit Titanic wreck

Suleman Dawood's aunt revealed the 19-year-old university student only went on the trip as it was Father's Day.

The search for the Titanic submersible search is officially over, with both the US Coast Guard and tourist submarine operator OceanGate revealing they believe all on board have perished.

Among the five members on board were Pakistani businessman Azmeh Dawood and his 19-year-old son Suleman.

Suleman’s aunt Shahzada Dawood told NBC News the university student 'wasn't very up for [the submarine adventure]' and felt ‘terrified’ about the voyage into the depths of the Atlantic Ocean.

However, Suleman ultimately agreed to board the 22-foot OceanGate submarine as it fell on the same weekend as Father’s Day and he was eager to please his dad.

Dawood family

Shahzada, who lives in Amsterdam, told NBC News in a phone interview" "I am thinking of Suleman, who is 19, in there, just perhaps gasping for breath."

She added: "It's been crippling, to be honest."

She sobbed on the phone throughout the interview, struggling to come to terms with the loss of her brother and nephew.

"I feel disbelief. It's an unreal situation," she said.

For the past four days, Shahzada has been glued to the TV screen, fearing the worst for her brother and nephew.

"I personally have found it kind of difficult to breathe thinking of them,” she added.

Shahzada and her brother are part of one of the most prominent corporate dynasties in Pakistan.

The family owns Dawood Hercules Corp, a publicly listed investment and holding company that works across a wide range of sectors.

Shahzada revealed she and her brother had lost contact over the past few years.

In 2014, she was diagnosed with primary progressive multiple sclerosis (MS) and was relegated to a wheelchair.

Her condition prompted her to move to Amsterdam with her husband, Jonathan, in order to access medicinal cannabis to help handle her MS.


However, Azmeh was unsupportive of her use of cannabis, causing them to lose contact.

But she remained close with her nephew, who she described as a kind-hearted man, adding: "He was my baby brother.”

The tour company released a statement released yesterday (22 June) after the vessel first lost contact with its mothership on Sunday (18 June) when it went to explore the famed shipwreck.

Authorities believed there was approximately 96 hours' worth of oxygen left on board at the time the submersible went missing and that the passengers would have run out of oxygen at around 1pm BST yesterday.

Rear Admiral John Mauger, of the US Coast Guard, said in a press conference last night that the tail cone of the Titan has been located close to the shipwreck and the debris discovered was 'consistent with a catastrophic loss of the pressure chamber'.

Topics: News, World News, Titanic