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WW2 British Veteran Hits Record as Oldest Diver

WW2 British Veteran Hits Record as Oldest Diver

Tuesday, 4 September, 2018 - 05:15
Ray Woolley, pioneer diver and World War 2 veteran, and other scuba divers pose for a photo at the Zenobia wreck, off the Cypriot town of Larnaca, Cyprus Saturday. Costas Constantinou, Larnaca Tourism Board, handout via Reuters
London - Asharq Al-Awsat
A 95-year-old British veteran of World War Two broke his own record as the world’s oldest scuba diver after taking the plunge to explore a shipwreck off Cyprus.

According to Reuters, Ray Woolley already dived for 44 minutes at a depth of 40.6 meters, beating his previous record of 41 minutes and 38.1 meters - when he was 94.

Woolley participated in the World War II, and celebrated his 95th birthday on August 28.

After emerging from the water, Woolley said: “We did it...I feel great. It’s lovely to break my record again and I hope if I can keep fit I will break it again next year with all of you.”

Woolley and dozens of other divers scoured the watery depths around the shipwreck of the Zenobia, a cargo vessel laden with trucks that sank about 2 km off the southern Cypriot town of Larnaca in 1980 on its maiden voyage.

Woolley, originally from Port Sunlight in northwest England who now lives in Cyprus, said he had first visited the wreck in 1982. A radio operator in the Second World War, he has been diving for 58 years. “I am trying to prove to myself, and I hope to other people, that exercise, especially when you are getting to around my age, is an important thing to do,” he told reporters after returning to land.

Zenobia’s location has become an extremely popular place for diving and about 60,000 visit the site each year.

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