Good News in History, August 24

3 years ago today, American explorer Victor Vescovo became the first man since the invention of the submersible to visit the deepest points in all five of the world’s oceans when he touched down in the Molloy Deep, about 100 miles west of Svalbard, in the Arctic Ocean. Vescovo went down in the DSV Limiting Factor. In doing so, he became the first man to touch the two magnetic poles, climb the Seven Summits (highest mountains on every continent) the Five Deeps, and outer space when he rode in a Blue Origin beyond the atmosphere on June 4th 2021. READ about the Five Deeps Challenge… (2019)

Enrique Alvarez / EYOS Expeditions

When Vescovo completed his marathon submersible dives, The Five Deeps Expedition established the depth of the Molloy Deep in the Arctic Ocean as 5,550 m (18,210 ft) ±14 m (46 ft), a little shallower than previous estimates.

On February 4, 2019, he became the first person to reach the bottom of the Southern Ocean, in the southern portion of the South Sandwich Trench, while On April 16, 2019, Vescovo dived to the bottom of the Sunda Trench south of Bali, reaching the bottom of the Indian Ocean. The team reported sightings of what they believed to be species new to science, including a hadal snailfish and a gelatinous organism believed to be a stalked ascidean.

On April 28, 2019, Vescovo descended nearly 11 km (6.8 mi) to the deepest place in the ocean—the Challenger Deep in the Pacific Ocean’s Mariana Trench. On his first descent, he piloted the DSV Limiting Factor to a depth of 10,928 m (35,853 ft), a world record by 16 m (52 ft).[10] Diving for a second time on May 1, he became the first person to dive the Challenger Deep twice, finding “at least three new species of marine animals” and “some sort of plastic waste”.

MORE Good News on this Day:

Potato chips were first prepared (1853)
Turkey and Persia (1929) and France and Soviet Union (1931) sign friendship treaties
Amelia Earhart became the first woman to fly across the United States non-stop, successfully landing her flight from Los Angeles in Newark, New Jersey (1932)
Irish teacher Brian Keenan was released in Beirut after 4 years of captivity, thanks to Iran’s negotiations with his Hezbollah kidnappers in Lebanon, four months after they gained the release of two Americans (1990)
A US judge ruled that heavy metal band Judas Priest was not responsible for the suicide deaths of two fans (1990)
Ukraine declared itself independent from the Soviet Union (1991)
Diplomatic relations were established between the People’s Republic of China and South Korea (1992)

131 years ago today, Thomas Edison patented the motion picture camera developed by his employee, Scottish inventor William Kennedy Dickson.

The Kinetograph camera used an electric motor to shoot moving pictures with sprocketed film. This allowed the strip to stop long enough so each frame could be fully exposed and then advance quickly (in about 1/460 of a second).

Though portability was not among the camera’s virtues, it was the first practical system for the high-speed stop-and-go film movement that would be the foundation for the next century of cinematography. (1891)

Happy Birthday to Ron Weasley (Rupert Grint) who turns 34 today.

From the Snatch trailer 2019

After having previously acted only in school plays and in his local theatre group, the English boy of 11 was cast in the Harry Potter series and starred in all eight blockbuster movies. He has starred in many films since then, including Cherrybomb, and Cross of Honour. In 2013, he made his stage debut in Mojo and most recently starred in, and was executive producer of, Snatch, a series starting its second season of organized crime debauchery later this year. (1988)

Also, 55 years ago today, penguins from London’s Chessington Zoo were taken on a day trip to a local ice rink to cool off during the city’s heat wave. The penguins seemed delighted as they joined skaters in Streatham in the new icy surroundings.

Once released from their box, the pair of Rockhopper penguins waddled purposefully towards the ice appearing completely unfazed by the other skaters. Once on the slippery surface they conducted themselves with dignity and grace. Staff at the ice-rink were so impressed they extended an invitation to the zoo’s other 20 penguins and said the seals could even come along too. WATCH the video from the BBC… (1967)

132 years ago today, Duke Kahanamoku, the Hawaiian man who delivered the sport of surfing to the rest of the world, was born.

Duke Kahanamoku 1912-and with his solid redwood surfboard in California in 1921

Never having finished elementary school, the Native Hawaiian Duke Paoa Kahinu Mokoe Hulikohola Kahanamoku became a competitive freestyle swimmer—in fact, a 5-time Olympic medalist. After retiring from the Games, Kahanamoku traveled internationally to give swimming exhibitions. When he decided to incorporate surfing in these shows, the sport—which had previously been known only in Hawaii—grew tremendously in popularity. He is revered in California where, in 1912, he first brought surfing to the mainland.

Two years later in Australia, where he also pioneered the sport, the board that Duke built from a piece of pine from a local hardware store (he always preferred traditional wood boards) is on display today at a New South Wales Surf Club.

While living in California, Duke became an actor and a law enforcement officer and pitched in as a lifeguard for a local athletic club. At age 35, he rescued eight men from a fishing vessel that capsized in heavy surf. The Newport Beach police chief called Duke’s efforts, “The most superhuman surfboard rescue act the world has ever seen.” It also led to lifeguards across the US to begin using surfboards as standard equipment for water rescues.

The first major professional surfing contest ever held in the huge surf on the North Shore of Oahu, was named in his honor, the Duke Kahanamoku Invitational Surfing Championships. (1890 – 1968)

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