As the search for a tourist submersible carrying five wealthy adventurers continues for a fourth day, attention online has turned to one passenger’s stepson, who said the experience has been “a nightmare.” Brian Szasz, the 37-year-old stepson of British billionaire Hamish Harding, was met with intense criticism on Monday when he posted a since-deleted photo of himself at a Blink-182 concert in San Diego while the news about the Titan submersible was breaking around the world. “It might be distasteful being here but my family would want me to be at the Blink-182 show as it’s my favorite band and music helps me in difficult times,” Szasz wrote on Facebook.
He also tweeted the Blink-182 bandmembers directly, writing, “My stepdad Hamish is on this submarine lost at sea. I’m devastated but coming to the San Diego show tonight so you guys can give me hope and cheer me up.” Harding, the chairman of Action Aviation, and four others were onboard the OceanGate Expedition’s Titan submersible when it disappeared en route to the Titanic shipwreck.
Crews lost contact with the submersible shortly after it began its dive Sunday morning. Late Wednesday, Szasz uploaded a series of Instagram stories defending himself against online critics who said his concert attendance was inappropriate.
Szasz’s posts came only hours before the submersible was expected to run out of air. After thanking his followers for their “love and support,” Szasz said he was going to give people the “facts” about his reaction to his stepfather’s disappearance. “I can’t go out to the ocean,” said Szasz, adding that he had only about $100 to his name and a “legal situation” that prevented him from leaving his area. “I go to a Blink-182 concert because I have a ticket.