I'm sorry to hear that Millvina Dean, last survivor of the Titanic has passed away. She has meant so much to so many and I am sure all Titanic researchers, buffs and societies, will miss her greatly. God rest her soul.
Phil Gowan got a phone call this morning from mutual friends who keep tabs on Millvina and passed the word to those of us on Facebook. At the time, the press had not been notified. Here's what he wrote: "So very sorry to hear this morning that Millvina Dean, the last Titanic survivor, apparently died in her sleep. After a bout with pneumonia last week she seemed to be doing better and returned to the nursing home. Am sure the media will be flooded with more information as the day passes. She was a great lady, a good friend, and will be sorely missed."
I only met her once one-to-one but I'll never forget that encounter. I said it was "a pleasure to meet her"... she said, deadpan but sincerely, it was "a pleasure to meet me"! I'll never forget the twinkle in her eye! She had a tremendous, and very appealingly down-to-earth attitude to her unexpected fame.
I never got to meet her, but a few of my friends knew her pretty well and had told her about the work I was doing with TITANIC IMPACT. She sent me a message through them saying simply, "Keep up the good work!" I was very touched by her acknowledgement.
I didn't want to post here until I had the news confirmed.
I find it almost unbelievable that the very last living link to the Titanic has gone. Millvina was such a vivacious, forward looking lady and far more complex than was generally known.
So many people who post here met her and struck up friendships. As she said many times, 'I love meeting people.' Her house was open to all comers and I'm sure I'm not the only one here to remember her friendly hospitality; those high teas of salmon sandwiches and biscuits!
She was a dignified and charming 'Titanic Ambassador' who touched the lives of so many people with an interest in the famous disaster.
The end, when it came, was very quick - and that's just how she would have wanted it.