A chilling link has been discovered between pilot Stockton Rush, who was onboard the OceanGate submersible, and the Titanic disaster in 1912.

Mr Rush, who was at the helm of the vehicle bound for the Titanic wreckage, has a personal connection to two of the victims who were onboard the Titanic when it sank over 100 years ago.

His wife, Wendy Rush, is the great-great-granddaughter of Isador Straus, who co-founded Macy’s department store, and Ida Straus, who were among the wealthiest people aboard the Titanic’s ill-fated transatlantic voyage, according to archived records obtained by the New York Times.

The Strauses have long been remembered for their display of love and affection when the ocean liner hit the iceberg before infamously sinking in the North Atlantic, claiming the lives of more than 1500 people.

Survivors of the disaster reported seeing Ida refuse a place on the lifeboats, which were reserved largely for women and children, and decided to stay onboard the sinking vessel with her husband of more than 40 years.

Their tragic love story was depicted in James Cameron’s fictionalised version of the tragedy, his 1997 blockbuster Titanic, which features a scene showing an elderly couple holding on to each other in bed as waters rise around them.

Wendy Rush is descended from one of the couple’s daughters, Minnie Strauss, who married Dr. Richard Weil in 1905, and their son, Richard Weil Jr., served as president of Macy’s New York,

His son, Dr. Richard Weil III, is Wendy Rush’s father, Joan Adler, the executive director of the Straus Historical Society.

Isador’s body was found at sea weeks after the Titanic sank, but his wife’s body was never recovered.

Wendy also worked for OceanGate as their communications director, with her LinkedIn indicating she had been on several trips to the wreckage of the Titanic herself.

The OceanGate submersible reportedly imploded hours after it went missing, with all five people on board believed to be dead.

Image credits: OceanGate / Wikimedia

This article first appeared on Over60.