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Chris Sullivan


CCR diving on the Helen C

I’m a diver – and really love the sport. I am other things as well but on this blog I’m just a diver. I’m also now 63 years old – so I’m an old diver. Some of the things I’m going to write about have to do with being an old diver, and some things just about being a diver, or about diving, or places where there’s diving, which is just about everywhere where there’s water.  I might write a little about the people I dive with, and how I stay in shape so I can keep diving for a long time.

I’ve been a certified diver for  36 years. I’m a PADI Master Scuba Diver Trainer, become a technical diver in 2007, and made the plunge into (AP Diving Inspiration Vision) rebreather diving in 2016, and now certified for non-hypoxic mixed gas diving to 60m and have just become a PADI Tec 40 CCR Instructor. My day job is with IDC Canada, where we analyze the future of the information and technology industries.

I don’t know where this will take us but you’re welcome to tag along or join in.



1. Kevin Restivo - December 16, 2008

Hi Chris,

Keep up the great work! You’ve got a ton of great content here for the diving community.




deepstop - December 16, 2008

Thanks Kevin. Glad to see you in here! I hope some day we’ll see you in the water…. 🙂



2. Naples Scuba Diving - January 17, 2009

Chris, you do an excellent job of providing very useful information! Thanks for all you do..
– Joe


3. doppler - February 11, 2009

Hey Chris: good stuff. As an old technical diving instructor-trainer, I appreciate the angle you’re taking on your blog… take care and dive safe. Oh, and drop by my blog sometime!


deepstop - February 18, 2009

Looks like some interesting stuff on your blog. I’ll definitely read some more when I get home.


4. rickheil - March 31, 2009

Great blog Chris, keep up the work and more importantly the diving!
I’m right behind you… turning 50 so your just a few steps ahead, blazing the trail.
I too learned 25+ years ago, getting both PADI and YMCI open water and AOW. Took a break for about twenty years and have resumed the last few years and am loving it… exploring different types of diving and exploring technical diving, mostly for the learning and additional experience/confidence/understanding. It’s all just good!


5. California SCUBA Diver - April 7, 2009

You ain’t old! I dive with people chronologically older than you and they all say the same thing – Diving keeps you young!

Whether it be the Nitrogen, out-gassing, the water pressure or the physical activity involved, divers stay young… until they become instructors.


6. quikflik - April 8, 2009

as i mentioned on your ‘how does it look post’, i stop by here whenever you have a new post.
i enjoy reading your site and have learnt quite a bit from your physiology and gas posts.

and i dont think its instructing that makes you old! its how you instruct. i’m sure you will impart great stories and knowledge to your students.



7. deepstop - April 8, 2009

Hey, I don’t really feel old, just older. When I started diving it was a young man’s sport, now it’s for all ages and while still male-dominated, has more than a token number of women participating at both the recreational and professional levels. It’s a great motivator to stay in shape while my high school buddies battle their spreading waistlines and lifestyle related health problems.

I’m looking forward to many more years of diving and hope I can continue writing about it in this blog. When I started I had no idea whether I would be able to keep it up or not, but the 50 minute train ride to and from work has given me the time.

As for instructing. We’ll see how it plays out this summer. Maybe I’ll have grey hair and stoop by the fall.


8. lesliefieger - May 18, 2009

Hey old guy, in 9 days I will be 59. Still diving. It does keep you young, at least at heart. First dive 65 minutes, 2nd 55 minutes. dive fatique? ZERO. http://lesliefieger.wordpress.com/2009/05/18/getting-wet/


deepstop - May 19, 2009

That gives me hope – thanks!


9. Amarilla - May 29, 2009

Chris, I came across your image of the wheel on the sea bottom and wonder if you would let me use it in a blog post on the subject of Buddhism, dharma and Nagarjuna. It’s a non commercial thing. If this is ok, please email me at Brooklynometry@gmail.com and look at the blog if you’d like, brooklynometry.blogspot.com.



10. Steve Irwin - June 4, 2009

Hi Chris,

Wanted to wish you the best of luck in the IE this weekend, and given your professionalism I know its reciprocated.

Looking forward to doing this dive with you!



deepstop - June 5, 2009

Thanks Steve – it certainly is reciprocated. I’m looking forward to seeing our entire group in the graduation picture on Sunday, wearing our new hats! I know I’m ready – I just have to not screw up!


11. Susan Lecerf - October 9, 2009

As a newly certified diver (young diver, older age lol), I really appreciate everything you had to say in your blog. You make those of us who are just getting into the sport, very excited about the various possibilities.

You’re an inspiration to look up to and strive toward.
Thanks! See you in the deep!


deepstop - October 10, 2009

Hi Susan,

Congratulations on your certification! There are lots of great adventures ahead for both of us, I’m sure. The more you dive, the more you’ll get out of the sport. There’s no substitute for getting the water and trying new things.

Thank you for your kind words,


12. Michael Toth - May 30, 2010

Hey Chris,

Daves son Mike.
We met at the hospital.

Hope all is going well with you.
Diving. Nice. He always talked about it, and always tried to get
me to go with him. Maybe, someday!

I use his skype, so hop on some time.
Would be nice to chat.
I didn’t get to hear about the stories before he died,
and I imagine you have one or two to talk about!

P.s. Don’t get eaten by any sharks.



Chris Sullivan - May 31, 2010

Mike – good to hear from you and see you here. It’s a shame I never had the chance to dive with Dave.


13. francesco - March 21, 2011

Great stuff here! I wish I’ll get all this experience one day… I started only 8 months ago, ehm…


Chris Sullivan - March 23, 2011

Thanks. Good luck with your blog. I like Neutrogena SPF 85 spray on sun block for the boat. It’s so easy to use it is no trouble to put it on when I get out of the water.


14. francesco - March 23, 2011

well, I meant DIVING experience, the blog started only 3 days ago 🙂 anyway thanks! I’ll keep on following you!


15. Richard Hyman - June 20, 2011

Chris, may I send you my new book for review. FROGMEN is about my time diving with Jacques Cousteau (1973-1979). – Richard


16. Richard Hyman - June 20, 2011

If you’d like the book please send me your address. Also, any other blogs, etc. you’d recommend? I’m trying to get the word out (self published so no big marketing machine behind it).


17. Chris Sullivan - June 21, 2011


Here’s a few blogs I read from time to time.


If you send me your book I can promise you I’ll read it and comment on this blog.



18. dave - September 7, 2011

thanks for the trimix blending formula I was wracking my brain trying to remember the second step, calculating the nitrox component


19. scubachristian - September 23, 2011

Keep the posts coming! It’s fun to read about new wrecks, but also interesting to hear different perspectives on the wrecks i’ve been on/in. At 31 I’m most often the youngest person on the boat, so I am starting to think diving may be more of an old man sport (nudge, nudge, wink, wink)


Chris Sullivan - September 23, 2011

Thank you for the encouragement. I don’t think it’s an old man (or woman) sport, but the superior equipment and better fitness of older people these days (at least some older people) has allowed us to keep diving. For younger people there’s more opportunity to do some real exploring and benefit from the experience of those who have gone before.

I hope to hear from again. Check back soon, or in 20 or 30 years…


20. John Knaff - September 25, 2011

The Final Dive – How much must a concrete burial vault 10’x4’x4′ weigh in ground with 18″ of soil covering to prevent it from ‘popping up’ from the ground given a flood 5′ above ground?


Chris Sullivan - September 27, 2011

At 160 cubic feet, the vault would displace, 10,240 pounds. So it would have to weigh more than than. How much more would depend on the forces of the flooding water. That would then depend on the terrain, soil density and composition, and many other factors, which go way beyond a simple buoyancy calculation.


21. coronerwyatt - September 13, 2012


Wondering if you still have the poseidon SPG and whether or not you might be willing to part with it?



22. Eleanor Jest - March 22, 2017

Good afternoon Chris,
I’m trying to get in touch with a Canadian diver and filmmaker John Stoneman. I found your blog (which has also been interesting to read!) from a google search and noticed that you tagged his name in a blog post a few years ago.
If you have any contact details for him, I would love to get in touch – I can send an email with more information, or I could send you a letter to pass on to him.
Thanks very much, Eleanor Jest


Chris Sullivan - March 29, 2017

Hi Eleanor, that’s a great question. I have no idea, actually. I’d be interested in what he’s up to, if anything. I’ll will ask around a bit and see if anyone in my network of diving friends knows.



23. Eleanor Jest - March 30, 2017

Hi Chris, Thanks very much, I really appreciate any help you can give. My email is ejest@directors.uk.com


24. Chris Sullivan - March 30, 2017

I found this Facebook fan page but the owners don’t know how to get in touch either. He would be about 78 now, assuming he’s still around. I hope he is.


25. Chris Sullivan - March 30, 2017

Here’s something from 2009 I found in a forum where the man himself had posted.


26. Eleanor Jest - March 31, 2017

Thanks very much for your help, Chris. I’ve sent a message to a producer he worked with a few years ago, hopefully that will lead me to John.
All the best, Eleanor


27. Alex Gurl - March 1, 2018

Is there any advice you would give to a younger guy trying to go deeper in salt water


Chris Sullivan - April 8, 2018

Make sure you get proper instruction. Salt or fresh, deep diving requires more attention to detail and planning and a good instructor will help you with that.


28. Pavel Freimann - September 25, 2018

Since when nitrogen is an inert gas??? People, when you write something, check your facts!!!


29. Chris Sullivan - October 11, 2018

Hi Pavel, you left the comment here, but there is nothing in this post that refers to Nitrogen as an inert gas. However, much of diving literature refers to N2 as inert. When I was young I learned that inert gases were Helium, Argon, Xenon, Neon, and Radon but diving literature tends to refer to these as “Noble gases”. I think the distinction is that when it comes to diving is that there are no chemical reactions in diving involving Nitrogen, so it is for practical purposes inert in this context.

Check out this Quora page for further information. Nitrogen is indeed reactive, but that doesn’t matter in diving.

If you really want to stretch the point, the noble gases aren’t truly inert either. They are more inert than Nitrogen, but Xenon can be persuaded to combine with Oxygen to form Xenon Trioxide, which is unsurprisingly quite unstable.


Chris Sullivan - December 14, 2018

Hello Eleanor. I hope your search worked out. Let me know if you see this. The most recent reference I can find to John is the Car Control School where he is listed as an instructor. I’m not sure how recent but the page is dated 2018, although that might well be an automatic update. I am searching for an episode of the Last Frontier called “the Arabia Incident” as it is one of my favourite shipwrecks and I would like to see that episode again to review what they learned in their search.


Eleanor Jest - January 7, 2019

Hi Chris, No luck in the end unfortunately with finding John. I am no longer trying to find him, but thanks for reaching out.
The best I have found for The Last Frontier is an amazon box set which may include last frontier footage. Out of stock on amazon, but might be helpful to you:


Chris Sullivan - April 8, 2019

Thanks Eleanor. Perhaps it will remain a mystery. Strange that he could disappear so thoroughly after having such a public career. I wonder if he could be found through Dr. Joe MacInnis, who is now 82 and appears in the Last Frontier. Dr. MacInnis has a Wikipedia page while John Stoneman does not, so he may be easier to track down.


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