The story of the Titanic is one that has captivated us all for nearly 100 years. I really don’t think that anyone can say for sure what exactly about her unique legacy draws us to her. I tend to believe that -at least for me - the most compelling aspect of Titanic’s legend is the highly unlikely convergence of many different scenarios, which resulted in her unfortunate and untimely demise. As in most tragic events that occur, it is the consistent oversight of the various factors involved which make up the entire timeline. I’ve often heard of the example that a tragedy is really a chain, a chain of events dependent upon each other to form the undesirable end result.
If you take away just one link of this imaginary chain, the tragedy does not occur. This is the unfortunate twist of fate that befell, in my opinion, the greatest ocean liner ever built.
Titanic, and everyone who sailed on her out of Queenstown (Cobh), Ireland on that 11th day of April, 1912, and all of their relatives and friends, and all those who worked so diligently in Belfast constructing her for three years, were cheated.
The great hand of fate, if indeed it exists, has been doing its deeds since the dawn of man, and Titanic was certainly fate at its worst. Those in positions of authority in relation to Titanic’s welfare, from Captain Smith to the British Board of Trade, among others, all allowed fate to board Titanic through their varying degrees of irresponsibility, vanity, or malais.
That aspect, that this was a preventable accident, is what has upset me most over the years, since my introduction at a young age to her story. It didn’t HAVE to happen. But, it did.
As time has gone by, the legend has grown larger, and maybe to an extent has been sensationalized somewhat.
Her story, from her birth to the present day, has been one long timeline, stretching over ten decades now. News of her still makes headlines even today.
After much deep thought on the matter of Titanic in recent years, and of all of the things currently going on in our world today, I’ve made a realization. I think that our world is caught up in a real struggle, one between those who are trying to do good, seeing things in a positive light, and trying to make things better for everyone else, and those who see only the negative in life, and bring down not only themselves, but try to bring everyone else down with them.
Well, I for one, will NOT go down that latter road. I believe in seeing the good in people. I believe in helping those who can’t do it for themselves. I believe in defending what is right and good, and just. It is a code within me.
So in all this thought that I’ve had going on in my mind over the past several years, especially since the tragedies of September 11, 2001, one has never left. That is my desire to make a difference here in this world, despite all of the negative things that have occurred and are occurring out there. I don’t have time for negativity. It doesn’t create anything. Anger doesn’t either. Neither does vengefulness.
I have a desire to help those who most need it. And those are our children among us all who are in desperate need, whether it be a vaccine, a cure, a meal, a bed, a helping hand, but most of all - hope. And someone who cares.
There are many people out there working very hard to see that we DO help as many as possible, so that these young people DO have hope for THEIR futures. Despite their efforts, much more can be done. I intend to stand with them, and assist in whatever way possible, but what is needed most is funding.
Thus, with a historic pitch from my sister, coupled with all of my ideas on our current society, Titan came to me.
Due to my incredible pull to the story of Titanic, and as one who isn’t exactly a billionaire who can make a financial difference in the lives of these needy children at this time, I feel that by bringing Titanic into the 21st century through Titan, as a symbol of hope in our world, in these days, in these times, that she can indeed be a ship of light for these needy children, and maybe even the world in general right now.
The world needs this.
And with the help of all of those who want to see this ideal take shape, it should come to pass, and I feel in fairly quick order. Titan will be more than a ship. She’ll be more than steel and glass moving through the waters of the world. She'll be much more than herself.
It is my hope that history will judge Titan as an ideal. One carrying the spirit of all that Titanic was, and could have been, and ultimately be found to be the embodiment of the very hope that today’s world needs.
The next several months will be crucial in this ultimate goal. We will be working diligently to raise the funds necessary to get our initial objectives completed, and that includes an initial design from Titanic’s original builder in Belfast, Northern Ireland.
As the Founder and Chairman of this effort, I wouldn’t have any other shipbuilder involved in this process. Harland & Wolff has built many magnificent ships over the years, but haven’t launched one into Belfast Lough since Canberra in 1960, 50 years ago. I am confident that this fact will soon change.
There are many hurdles that need to be overcome in the near future, but funding is the biggest, and this will be a serious challenge for us as an organization in the coming months with a sagging world economy. However, I am confident that this too will pass. Our ideals are rock solid. Our core values are in place, and our goals and objectives are clear.
We have planned our work, and now its time to work our plan, a saying made famous by a fellow St. Paulite, the late Herb Brooks.
I have put many sleepless nights on the line here, made sacrifices of time which took away from my family and friends, and poured over numbers and figures, intensely studying Titanic’s history, studying the market which we are entering, studying our potential competition, and many other facets of the industry, and of the organizations we will forge partnerships with to affect real change in the world for these needy young children.
I remember the nights spent at O’Donovan’s in Minneapolis, or the Dubliner in St. Paul as I pieced together my ideas, and wrote content for the plan over a pint here and there, while enjoying the atmosphere of good people, and good friends who share my Irish heritage.
It has been a journey - one that has been seemingly long, but is really only beginning.
I hope that the world joins me in this endeavor ...