One of the world's most accomplished and well known wreck divers, John Chatterton was one of the co-hosts for the History Channel's Deep Sea Detectives. Prior to his career in television, John spent twenty years working as a commercial diver in and around New York City, and was actually working on a project in the waters underneath the World Financial Center, across the street from the Tower #1, on September 11, 2001.
Researching,locating, and diving the world's shipwrecks has been John's passion. The discovery and six year quest to identify the German submarine U-869, off the coast of New Jersey, has been the subject of several television documentaries including a two hour special for the popular NOVA series on PBS. This same story became the subject of a Random House bestseller by Rob Kurson, Shadow Divers.
In August of 2005, John and his partners put together an expedition to the most famous shipwreck in the world, Titanic. Diving to a depth of 12,500 feet in the MIR submersibles from the Russian Research Ship Keldysh, they made discoveries about the wreck that were featured in two History Channel specials and a book. Author Brad Matsen brought the story to bookshelves with his bestseller, Titanic's Last Secrets.
Currently John and his partners are working in an ongoing relationship with the government of the Dominican Republic in a multi faceted commercial project that involves locating, surveying and identifying colonial era shipwreck sites in the waters around the island of Hispañola.
Cody's First Step Foundation
Since being paralyzed in the 6th grade by a spinal cord inflammation, Transverse Myelitis (TM), Cody has raced nonstop to raise awareness and find a cure. As the daughter of Indianapolis 500 winner Al Unser Jr., she dreams of walking on the racetrack one day. When she was just 14, she and her mother, Shelley, formed the Cody Unser First Step Foundation, which is dedicated to providing quality–of–life programs for those suffering from paralysis. These programs include a TM research consortium spearheaded by Johns Hopkins Hospital; Cody's Great Scuba Adventure, created to share her new found freedom for all disabilities; and "Operation Deep Down", a military diving program that introduces wounded veterans to scuba as a way to rehabilitate through recreation. Cody is a political activist who has testified before Congress and lobbied nationwide for stem cell research, following in the foot steps of her friend, late actor Christopher Reeve.
SUDS (Soldiers Undertaking Disabled Scuba)
Wounded Warrior, SUDS Diver
Like too many other service men and women, Matias Ferreira was injured while serving his country. Instead of letting the bilateral below-the-knee amputation break his spirit, he picked up his remaining pieces and turned himself into a walking, talking, sports-playing, scuba diving inspiration...all before his 25th birthday.
Today Matias volunteers his time to help fellow wounded warriors through SUDS (Soldiers Undertaking Disabled Scuba), and inspires children facing similar problems though the Wounded Warrior Amputee Softball Kids Camp. He shows us all that anything is possible, and it is this, combined with his dedication to others, that makes Aqua Lung proud to have Matias Ferreira as an Ambassador.
Our World – Underwater Scholarship Society in Europe
2017 European Rolex Scholar of the Our World-Underwater Scholarship Society
t all began with her visits to the Malaysian coast line to see her mother’s family. From a young age, Mae would be thrown into the water by her aunts and uncles with a mask and snorkel on and from there it grew exponentially. When she found out that SCUBA diving was something people did, she could hardly wait to turn 12 and complete her open water qualification. She and her father, also an avid diver, dipped underneath the waves of the British sea as often as possible. Thus began the snowballing passion to explore the underwater realm.
It became apparent that this wasn’t to be just a hobby, but rather something worth pursuing as a career. There was nothing that caught Mae’s desire more than to be near the sea. She was able to dive with marine biologists with the UK project SeaSearch, volunteering to help catalogue the diversity and abundance of British marine life. Meeting “real life” marine biologists fuelled Mae’s need to understand and study this incredible blue world.
Once 18, Mae flew to Mexico to partake in a conservation programme and dive master internship with Global Vision International. During the first half of the programme she learnt how to survey the health of the reef, identifying and monitoring the corals along with turtles and other mega fauna. Next, she completed her dive master internship in a dive shop in the little town of Mahahual. She decided that home wasn’t quite in the cards yet, opting instead to train new volunteers back at the conservation base until she had to return to England for University.
Back in England, Mae had a fire to complete her degree at Plymouth University, earning a 1st Class Honour in Marine Biology (BSc) as well as completing an HSE commercial diver course alongside an academic module in scientific diving. She fully enjoyed her undergraduate degree and her final dissertation project, which focused on the effects chemicals leached out of plastics have on behaviour and embryonic development.
Mae, 22, is interested in the avenue of scientific communication, an area she first encountered during her time in Plymouth when she worked at The National Marine Aquarium as a host. The task of bridging the gap between the latest science and the public and trying to generate dialogue is the area Mae is now most interested in pursuing, resulting in her current undertaking of a Masters in Scientific Communication. The opportunity provided by the OWUSS as the European Rolex Scholar is a phenomenal chance for Mae to try and capture a snapshot of what is out there, and help her achieve her dream of reconnecting others back to the sea.
Ana is thrilled to be representing Apeks and Aqua Lung and OWUSS as the 2017 European Scholar.
Follow Mae's travels and training at Our World–Underwater Scholarship Society