On January 23, 1960, Don Walsh, together with the Swiss submarine scientist Jacques Piccard, dived to a depth of 10,916 m into the above-mentioned depression on the Trieste bathyscaphe, setting an absolute record for the depth at which a person has been in the ocean.
On November 2, 2023, Don Walsh turned 92 years old. Anatoly Sagalevich, with whom they had been friends since 1979, congratulated him on his birthday:
My dear deepest friend Don:
Congratulations!!! 92 is not a joke!
Health and love.
Always with you.
Crazy Russian Tolya
Don Walsh sent the following response:
It is wonderful to get your birthday greetings. I cannot believe I have arrived at 92 years in relatively good health and with all my original teeth!
Do you realize that it's been over 40 years since we first met at the MTS conference in Washington DC? Many kilometers of underwater adventures since then...
It now seems unlikely that we shall ever meet again in person. Sad, but that's the way of today's world.
Well, a big embrace from Joan, Kelly and me. And thanks for your friendship and guidance during our times together...
Best wishes my friend for your continuing good health and tranquility in Rodina.
The friendship of A.M. Sagalevich and Don Walsh was accompanied by constant contacts not only by mail. They constantly exchanged visits. Don Walsh took part in several voyages on the R/V Akademik Mstislav Keldysh, and together with A.M. Sagalevich dived into the Mir-1 GOA on the Titanic, Bismarck, and the Rainbow hydrothermal field.
Don Walsh has left a deep mark on the world's ocean science. His name has become a symbol of deep-sea exploration not only in the USA, but throughout the World!
We will remember Don Walsh not only as an explorer of the deep ocean, but also as a wonderful, open and very friendly person.
Anatoly Sagalevich and the MIR team