Scuba Diving Hall of Fame Celebrates 10th Anniversary

The International SCUBA Diving Hall of Fame is hosting its 10th anniversary awards banquet and induction ceremony Saturday, 30 January, at Pedro St James. Eleven persons will be honoured for their contributions to the growth of SCUBA diving as a sport and for their contributions in the fields of dive travel, entertainment, art, equipment design and development, education, exploration and adventure.

Scuba Diving Hall of Fame

Scuba Diving Hall of Fame

Scuba Diving Hall of Fame Founded in 2000

Founded in 2000 by the Ministry of Tourism, the Cayman Islands is home to the ISDHF, created to establish a link between the Cayman Islands, a premiere diving destination, and diving enthusiasts worldwide who have made significant contributions to the recreational SCUBA diving industry.

New Members of Scuba Diving Hall of Fame

The 2010 inductees are Dr Eugenie Clark, known affectionately as the “shark lady,” a world-renowned ichthyologist and authority on sharks; Benoit Rouquayrol, who developed, patented and manufactured a self-contained breathing apparatus that became the first production SCUBA diving system; Wyland, a marine life artist and leading advocate for marine resource conservation; Nick Icorn, a diving pioneer regarded as the “keeper of the flame” for preserving diving’s illustrious history through his collection of representative samples of diving gear; Professor Louis Boutan, the first diver to take underwater photos; Francis Toribiong, who started the first dive operation in Palau and discovered the Blue Corner, one of the most famous dive sites in the world; Henry Albert Fleuss, who produced the first practical and successful closed-circuit breathing apparatus; Commandant Yves Le Prieur, who co-founded the world’s first recreational SCUBA diving club in 1935; and Auguste Denayrouze, who worked with the inventor Benoit Rouquayrol to develop and manufacture the self-contained breathing apparatus, and successfully marketed it internationally.

Dr. Eugenie Clark Shark Lady

Dr. Eugenie Clark Shark Lady

The early pioneer awards for Professor Louis Boutan, Henry Albert Fleuss, Commandant Yves Le Prieur, Benoit Rouquayrol and Auguste Denayrouze will be given posthumously.

Each year, the Ministry of Tourism also honours Caymanians, paying tribute to the important role they played transforming the Cayman Islands into the premier diving destination that it is today. This year’s local honourees are Charles Ebanks, known locally as Captain Chuckie, and Patrick Noel Evans.

Special guests will be Ron and Valerie Taylor, who filmed the live shark sequences and underwater action footage in film and TV productions including Jaws, Orca and the Blue Lagoon; Sylvia Munro, who received the first early pioneer award on behalf of her father who made the silent movie version of 20,000 Leagues Under The Sea in 1915; Dan Orr, President of DAN; and the Minister of Natural Resources, Environment & Tourism for the Palau Islands, Hon. Harry Fritz.

Also at the event on Saturday night, artifacts which have been collected for the planned Hall of Fame building will be displayed, including a customized wet suit from the movie The Daring Game, starring Lloyd Bridges; a circa 1947 La Spirotechnique Cousteau & Gagnan CG 45 regulator, recreational diving’s first production regulator; and a pair of Sea Net wooden diving fins circa late 1940s.

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