According to Suleman Dawood’s mother, the late teenager who tragically died in the Titan submersible took his Rubik’s Cube along with him, driven by his desire to break a world record.
In an interview with the BBC, Christine Dawood revealed that her 19-year-old son had applied to the Guinness World Records for this achievement. Suleman’s father, Shahzada, who also lost his life in the incident, had brought a camera to capture the momentous occasion.
Recalling the events, Christine Dawood and her daughter were present on the Polar Prince, the support vessel for the submersible, when they received the distressing news about the loss of communication with the Titan. “At that moment, I didn’t fully comprehend what it meant, and then everything spiraled downhill from there,” she expressed.
In her first interview since the tragedy, Mrs. Dawood disclosed that she had initially planned to join her husband to witness the wreckage of the Titanic, but their trip had to be canceled due to the Covid-19 pandemic. “Then I stepped back and gave them space to set [Suleman] up because he really wanted to go,” she explained.
Aside from Suleman and Shahzada Dawood, three other individuals lost their lives onboard the submersible: Stockton Rush, the 61-year-old CEO of OceanGate, the company that owned the Titan, Hamish Harding, a 58-year-old British businessman, and Paul-Henry Nargeolet, a 77-year-old former French navy diver and renowned explorer. Mrs. Dawood spoke lovingly of her son, stating that Suleman had a deep passion for the Rubik’s Cube and would carry it with him everywhere, astonishing bystanders with his ability to solve the complex puzzle in a mere 12 seconds.
She recounted his words, “‘I’m going to solve the Rubik’s Cube 3,700 meters below sea at the Titanic.'”
Suleman was a student at the University of Strathclyde in Glasgow, UK, while his father, Shahzada Dawood, a British citizen, hailed from one of Pakistan’s wealthiest families.
The family, accompanied by their 17-year-old daughter Alina, boarded the Polar Prince on Father’s Day. Mrs. Dawood recalled the joyous moments shared before her husband and son embarked on the Titan submersible. “I was really happy for them because both of them had desired to do that for a very long time,” she said.
Describing her husband’s infectiously curious nature and his ability to ignite childlike excitement in those around him, Mrs. Dawood mentioned how he would often gather the family to watch documentaries after dinner.
Staying aboard the Polar Prince, Mrs. Dawood and her daughter experienced a transition from hopeful anticipation to desperation as the search and rescue mission continued. “I think I lost hope when we surpassed the 96-hour mark,” she confessed.
Mrs. Dawood revealed that it was at this point when she sent a message to her family, expressing her preparation for the worst. “That’s when I lost hope,” she said.
Alina, on the other hand, held onto hope a little longer. “She didn’t lose hope until the call with the Coast Guard when they informed us that they found debris.”
On Saturday, the family returned to St. John’s, and the following day, they held a funeral prayer for Shahzada and Suleman. Mrs. Dawood expressed her gratitude for the Imam including all five men who lost their lives in the prayer.
To honor Suleman’s memory, Mrs. Dawood and her daughter have decided to learn how to solve the Rubik’s Cube themselves, and she intends to carry on her