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article imageThe story of Titanic will never sink

By Tim O'Brien     Mar 27, 2012 in Lifestyle
With the upcoming release of "Titanic" in 3D and the 100th anniversary of the ship's sinking, the legend seems to never want to stay at the bottom of the ocean.
Fresh off his deep sea dive, James Cameron is back on the surface to see how much his Academy Award winning movie can take in when it goes in wide release again on April 4. All it has to do is make roughly $161 million, or so, to overtake "Avatar" as the highest grossing film of all time (U.S. domestic figures). Oh, that is a Cameron film, too.
Now, let's travel to Canada where the many who perished on the ship are buried. Halifax, Nova Scotia has always been a magnet for those seeking to get near the disaster. It also has a grave marked J. Dawson, but not the Jack Dawson who is featured in the movie and played by Leonardo DiCaprio. USA Today has done a fantastic piece on what will happen and is at their location. See link here.
It may be interesting to note that nowhere was the Titanic advertised as "unsinkable" but that legend never died. And since it sank, it grew. And the SOS was not used at first, but rather CQD was. Later SOS was used and then back to CQD, too. It it did take 2 hours and 40 minutes for the rescue ship to arrive, after they launched their first distress call.
If one heads to Halifax, there are 150 bodies buried there out of the 1,523 who perished. Transcripts of the distress calls can be seen and read, too. They even go into detail about what John Jacob Astor was wearing.
One item that stands out may be how they treated the passengers, much like on the ship. For example, Many more embalmers had to be called and that was for the first class passengers only. They were taken to a mortuary in what is now a seafood restaurant. Meanwhile, second and third class passengers were not embalmed and kept on ice at an ice rink.
By the way, on May 31, 2009, Millvina Dean, Titanic's last survivor, died.
The following is only a partial sampling of the distress calls that night:
11.15 p.m. (approx)
14 April 1912
R.M.S. Titanic to Cape Race, Newfoundland:
"Sorry, please repeat. Jammed".
Between 11.35 and 11.45 p.m. (most likely the latter) Captain Smith informed Phillips and Bride that the ship had hit an iceberg, and to prepare a distress call. The captain returned at 12.15 a.m. and told them to send it.
12.15 a.m.
15 April 1912
R.M.S. Titanic to Any Ship:
"CQD Titanic 41.44 N 50.24 W"
(CQD was the contemporary distress signal, though soon, the new distress signal would be put to use for the very first time).
12.17 a.m.
15 April 1912
R.M.S. Titanic to Any Ship:
"CQD CQD SOS Titanic Position 41.44 N 50.24 W. Require immediate assistance. Come at once. We struck an iceberg. Sinking".
(SOS was the first use of the new distress signal. So far, two ships had responded to the Titanic's distress call. They included the 'Frankfurt', nearly 170 miles away, and the 'Olympic', nearly 500 miles away.)
To paraphrase the movie, "Are you ready to go back to Titanic"?
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