Aggressor co-founder Wayne Hasson dies


Aggressor co-founder Wayne Hasson dies

Hasson 5

One of the best-known names in the international scuba world, US diver and liveaboard operator Wayne Hasson, has died of cancer at the age of 70. 

Hasson started scuba diving in 1967 and became an instructor in 1971 and a boat captain the following year. During eight years spent as a US marine, serving in Vietnam, Japan and North Carolina, he taught some 500 fellow-marines to dive.

Hasson became owner and captain of early charter liveaboard the King Mac in North Carolina in 1976 and in 1980 relocated to the Cayman Islands to manage the Casa Bertmar Dive Resort.

In 1984 he teamed up with diver Paul Haines, who wanted to convert his oil-industry crew-boat into a dive yacht, and so became first captain of the Cayman Aggressor.

In 1988 the two re-purposed another oil-crew boat as the Belize Aggressor and started a franchise operation that would grow into the world’s biggest dive-liveaboard fleet. As co-founder, Hasson has been described as the “father of liveaboard diving”.

When Wayne Brown bought Aggressor Fleet in 2007 Hasson became a minority shareholder and president of the company, which expanded the following year when it acquired the Dancer Fleet. Today Aggressor operates 23 diving liveaboards around the world.

Hasson was an instructor-trainer for several training agencies, an SSI Platinum Pro diver with more than 10,000 dives logged, and a keen underwater photographer.

Environmental concerns led him to organise the first permanent mooring sites for dive-boats in the Cayman Islands, and he extended the concept to other parts of the world, including Belize, Turks & Caicos, Honduras, Hawaii, Palau and Chuuk.

18 January 2020

Hasson was also recognised for his mentoring of young people and was a director of the Sea of Change and Oceans For Youth foundations. Accolades included Diving Pioneer, Legend of the Sea and Sea Hero awards and induction into the Cayman Islands’ International Scuba Diving Hall of Fame.

He met his wife Anne when he taught her to dive in the Caymans in 1981, and she worked with him to develop the Aggressor operation, continuing today as reservations, advertising & marketing vice-president. They lived with their family in Naples, Florida.



Get a weekly roundup of all Divernet news and articles 🤿

We don’t spam! Read our privacy policy for more info.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.

Related Divernet Posts

Diver Magazine Relaunch

Diver magazine needs YOU!

Are you still lamenting the demise of Diver magazine? Well now you can help resurrect an icon as we seek to bring back the magazine

manta ray and diver over reef in Komodo

Divers pitch into Komodo manta probe

Manta rays choose to stick around Indonesia’s Komodo National Park in unusually large numbers – and, according to a new diver-led study, this community could

female diver holding pair of Fourth Element Tech fins

Tech fins inspired by humpback whales

Whales provided the inspiration for optimising efficiency in Fourth Element’s latest fins, according to the Cornwall-based manufacturer. The “turbulence disruptors” on top of the blades

Last Breath portrait of Woody Harrelson

Woody dives into Last Breath remake

A new version of the British documentary-thriller that captured the imaginations of divers in 2019 is about to be previewed at the Cannes Film Festival.

Viagra tablet

Viagra and diving: Risk reduction

Awareness is everything in diving, and BOB COLE has advice for divers who, for whatever reason, take PDE5 inhibitors I recently met an old friend

Reefs of Raja Ampat

Reefs of Raja Ampat

Local Guide to Raja Ampat Reefs, #4 Neu Reef While Raja Ampat is home to an incredible number of dive sites, one area, in particular,

Follow Divernet on Social Media