- The Washington Times - Tuesday, July 11, 2006

BOSTON (AP) — David Bright, a leading researcher into underwater exploration and shipwrecks, died July 8 after diving to the site of the Andrea Doria off Nantucket, Mass., where he was working in preparation for the wreck’s 50th anniversary. He was 49.

Mr. Bright surfaced from a dive with decompression sickness and went into cardiac arrest, the Coast Guard said. He was pronounced dead at Cape Cod Hospital a short time later.

His wife of 23 years, Elaine Bright, said the circumstances that led to his death were not immediately clear and the family was awaiting an autopsy report.

Mr. Bright was an experienced historian and technical diver who had explored the Titanic, Andrea Doria and other shipwrecks many times — 120 times for the Andrea Doria alone.

The Andrea Doria was sailing from Genoa, Italy, to New York when it collided with the Swedish ship Stockholm on July 25, 1956, killing about 50 people. The Italian luxury liner lies at the bottom of the Atlantic in 200 feet of water, about 50 miles southeast of Nantucket.

Mr. Bright’s research into the Titanic, Andrea Doria and other sites has been part of dozens of documentaries, and he lectured often on ship exploration.

He had an extensive personal collection of artifacts, and established the Andrea Doria Museum Project, based at the Nantucket Lifesaving Museum, which lends artifacts to museums.

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