The 2-person submersible piloted by Mr. Vescovo “has no working depth limitation,” permitting it to go farther than the car utilized in 2019, in line with Caladan Oceanic.
The others on the mission had been Parks Stephenson, a retired lieutenant commander with the U.S. Navy; and Shane Eigler, a senior submarine technician.
Final month, Mr. Vescovo and his group got here up empty-handed on two dives. However on a 3rd try, one thing new emerged: “the very sharp pointy finish of the bow of the ship,” Mr. Vescovo mentioned throughout a phone interview this week from his house in Dallas. “We had been simply surprised at how intact it was.”
Mr. Vescovo, who was with Mr. Eigler on the dive, slowly steered his submersible to the aspect of the ship, and, “There it was, shiny white numbers, on the hull: 557,” he mentioned. “I turned to my co-pilot, as a result of I used to be very busy piloting the sub and ensuring that we had been protected, and I mentioned, ‘Get an image! Get an image!’”
It was, he later wrote on Twitter, “an especially intense expertise.”
On their fourth dive, they took extra footage and video, which confirmed two five-inch gun turrets, twin torpedo racks and a number of other gun mounts on the ship. And, after all, the large 557. “Imagery from the location clearly exhibits the ship’s hull quantity 557 confirming the identification of the wreck,” the Naval Historical past and Heritage Command mentioned in an announcement on April 1.
The journey to the wreckage of the Johnston was not Mr. Vescovo’s first headline-making dive. In 2019, he declared that he had made the deepest-ever dive by a human being, after piloting a submersible into Challenger Deep, a spot practically seven miles down in a protracted fissure within the western Pacific.
(That declare was disputed by James Cameron, the Hollywood director of “The Abyss” and “Titanic,” who can also be a diving devotee and explored the Challenger Deep throughout a 2012 expedition.)