If only.... The saga of H.M.S. Titanic resonates with "if only..."
If only the designers, builders and owners hadnít bought into the ultimately fatal myth of her being unsinkable.... If only the chairman of the White Star Line hadnít decided, in a fit of corporate hubris, to try to chop a day off the trans-Atlantic crossing record .... If only the Titanic had been adequately supplied with lifeboats.
In the end, the facts are simple ó and grim. The Titanic struck the iceberg at 11:39 the night of April 14, 1912. At 2:40 a.m., three hours and one minute later, the Titanic literally broke in half and slid under the surface of the Atlantic. Survivors reported a long, stunned silence followed the sinking.
Seven hundred five people were rescued, many of them plucked barely alive from the almost calm sea, which was a frigid 28 degrees. Fifteen hundred twenty-three people perished. Most of the bodies were never recovered. To this day, it is a tragedy that grips the imagination.