Biographies

Here you can browse the biographies of the original crew of the Calypso and Alcyone. These are the fantastic people who made Jacques-Yves Cousteau's dreams come true, and gave so many of us the passion for the oceans and diving. Did you serve on board the Calypso or the Alcyone? Do you know anyone who has? Please contact us and send a short biography and personal story along with a couple pictures to info@cousteaudivers.org.

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Garcia Henri

Garcia Henri

“My official contract began when Calypso visited Patagonia after the Antarctic mission. July 74 to 78. A lot had happened before, and even more afterwards.

Previously I was staying on the Espadon in Marseilles. We had taken the ship down to Monaco, stopping by Sormiou to celebrate Falco’s birthday with Simone, Raymond Coll and Paul Zuena, second captain of the Calypso. In July 74, I flew to Miami to board the Calypso.

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Laban André

André Laban was born on October 19th 1928 in Marseille where he grew up. In 1952, just as he finished his studies as chemical engineer, he hears that Cousteau is looking for and engineer. He shows up. When Cousteau asks him: « What can you do ? », he replies « Nothing, but I fix things and tinker a lot ». He is hired for a trial week. A trial week that lasted 21 years.

 His first dive takes place on the Grand Congloué shipwreck in 1952, alone, by night, with half-filled tanks.    

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Noirot Didier

Noirot Didier

Born in France in 1957, Didier’s passion for photography and diving began early. Trained at the Glénans dive center with Jeff Tréhiou, he became an instructor in 1982. He then entered the Club Méditerranée where he taught underwater photography techniques for three years.

In November 1986, the real underwater adventure begins, when he joins Jacques Cousteau’s prestigious crew. Hired as photographer, his first expedition takes him to New Zealand, where he discovers the hostile universe of the southern 50th parallel. One expedition ends and another begins: Polynesia, Australia, Papau New Guinea. 

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Van Alphen Çapkin

“ When we make plans in life our ambitions lead us in different directions, and when we arrive to those destinations we realize the journey has been more fruitful than the destination, and our plans have changed for the better. Our strong choices made today, lead the way for a better future. I feel that applies individually and collectively.”

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Wesly Claude

Wesly Claude

Born in 1930 in Malo-Les-Bains, France, Claude was a ski instructor, gym teacher and high level competition swimmer before boarding the Calypso. In 1955 he observed people scuba-diving in the lake of Annessy and decided to try for himself. At the time, recalls Claude, they had no wetsuits and dove in sweatshirts.
Claude later began work around Marseilles as technical director of the local sailing club.

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