It’s with sadness the GLSHS shares the news that the diving community lost a friend and giant in the underwater exploration industry yesterday, Phil Nuytten. He was a pioneer when it came to inventing underwater equipment for commercial, scientific, and military purposes. He worked closely with the National Geographic Society, NASA and many others. Mr. Nuytten was also responsible for inventing the Newtsuit.
One of his Newtsuits helped cut the bell off the Edmund Fitzgerald in 1995 (piloted by Bruce Fuoco) by a request from family members who wanted something tangible to remember their loved ones by…the bell now sits at the Great Lakes Shipwreck Museum in honor of the 29 men who died on the Fitzgerald the night of November 10th, 1975. A replica bell was placed back onto the Edmund Fitzgerald where it sits to this day. The invention of the Newtsuit helped make all this happen. You can see a replica of the Newtsuit near the bell of the Fitzgerald at the Shipwreck Museum at Whitefish Point.
Phil Nuytten was 81. The Great Lakes Shipwreck Historical Society will always be grateful for his many accomplishments across the world, and right out our back door in Lake Superior…rest in peace friend.