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No one was sure, though, where the submarine actually was because the line to the rescue buoy had snapped.

The day before, an old harbor tug, the Penacook, cruised back and forth for hours over the spot where the buoy was found, trying to snag the Squalus with a grapnel. No one was sure if it was actually attached to the wreck, or to a boulder, or to something else. Charles Wesley Shilling, senior medical officer for the rescue operation, stood on the Falcon’s deck and held his breath as Sibitsky descended.

“You’re not going to believe this,” he said to the crew topside. Sibitsky spotted the broken cable from the rescue buoy and moved it so it wouldn’t interfere with the diving bell.

The grapnel hook had caught a railing three to four feet from the hatch they’d use to get the men out – exactly where it needed to be. Then he stomped on the hatch to let the crew know he was there.

In 1939, the greatest submarine rescue in history was undertaken off the coast of Portsmouth, N. This is the second part of a two-part series about the heroic efforts to rescue the trapped crew of the USS Squalus as millions around the world followed their race against time. , she found her mother and grandfather listening to the radio.

Undoubtedly it was the Boston station WBZ, which boasts to this day it was the first on the scene.

The diving bell was 10 feet high and seven feet wide.

It had an upper chamber and a lower chamber, which could be attached with a rubber seal to the hatch of the sub.

”Not only is one very weak and awkward but one's mind functions so slowly that it is hard for the people topside, or outside the diving tank, to believe what they see.” Three minutes later Sibitsky landed on the deck of the Squalus.

He reached for the shackle at the end of the cable with his heavy glove and missed it. It took 40 minutes to return him gradually to the surface, where Dr.

Shilling accompanied him to the recompression chamber.

“Somebody is alive down there,” Dorothy's mother shouted.

She told her daughter that the trapped men were hammering messages in Morse code on the side of the .

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