25 April 1933 - 17 December 2018
Late on Monday 17 December 2018 one of the great identities in SCUBA diving, Allan Power of Espiritu Santo, Vanuatu, passed away. Allan was well known and highly regarded among his peers and divers travelled the world to meet him and share his passion for diving and love of the marine world that the wreck of the SS President Coolidge provided.
Allan was born in Sydney, Australia and developed a passion for the water and fascination for marine life. He was hard working and ambitious to embrace opportunities and after several careers was drawn to the Barrier Reef and underwater photography. His timeless book The Great Barrier Reef published in 1977 became a classic and copies are still treasured, as it was a book that opened the eyes of many to the underwater glory of the reef. What Allan was showing us involved issues that are commonly recognised today regarding coral bleaching and water pollution.
After moving to Espiritu Santo, Vanuatu for a salvage operation, Allan established Allan Power Dive Tours which grew in stature as a premier dive operation and one that was held in high regard worldwide. His insistence on the welfare for his diving guests was evident in the manner in which he ran his dive operation and the quality of the guides he employed.
It is widely recognised that Allan initiated tourism on Espiritu Santo and was therefore a founding father to economic growth of the island. He was well known and respected by locals on Santo who always called him “Uncle”.
On 8 November 2011 Allan was inducted into the International SCUBA Diving Hall of Fame in the Cayman Islands. This prestigious award recognised his contribution to the diving industry with specific mention to his work and achievements on the SS President Coolidge.
The thousands of divers who have met Allan over the years may recall his incredible memory and detailed knowledge of underwater fish species and passion for sharing this knowledge. Allan was in his 85th year.