Jacques-Yves Cousteau in 1976
|Born||11 June 1910
|Died||25 June 1997
|Cause of death||Heart attack|
|Resting place||Saint-André-de-Cubzac, France|
|Spouse||Simone Melchior Cousteau (m. 1937-1990, her death)
Francine Triplet Cousteau (m. 1991-1997, his death)
|Children||4, including Jean-Michel and Philippe Cousteau|
Jacques-Yves Cousteau known as Jacques Cousteau (11 June 1910 - 25 June 1997) was a French naval officer, explorer, ecologist, filmmaker, innovator, scientist, photographer, author and researcher who studied the sea and all forms of life in water. He helped create the aqua-lung, helped marine conservation and was a member of the Académie française. He was also known as "le Commandant Cousteau" or "Captain Cousteau".
Life[change | change source]
Early life[change | change source]
Cousteau was born on 11 June 1910, in Saint-André-de-Cubzac, Gironde, to Daniel and Élisabeth Cousteau. He had one brother, Pierre-Antoine. Cousteau attended Collège Stanislas in Paris. In 1930, he entered the École Navale and graduated as a gunnery officer. After an automobile accident cut short his career in naval aviation, Cousteau changed to studying the sea.
In Toulon, where he was serving on the Condorcet, Cousteau carried out his first underwater experiments, thanks to his friend Philippe Tailliez who in 1936 lent him some Fernez underwater goggles. Cousteau also belonged to the information service of the French Navy, and was sent on missions to Shanghai and Japan (1935–1938) and in the USSR (1939).[source?]
On 12 July 1937 he married Simone Melchior (1919-1990), with whom he had two sons, Jean-Michel (born 1938) and Philippe (1940–1979). His sons took part in the adventures of the Calypso. In 1991, after his wife Simone's death from cancer, he married Francine Triplet. They already had a daughter Diane Cousteau (born 1980) and a son Pierre-Yves Cousteau (born 1982), born during Cousteau's marriage to his first wife.
Death[change | change source]
On the morning of 25 June 1997, Jacques-Yves Cousteau died at his home in Paris, aged 87 from a heart attack. Despite rumors, encouraged by some Islamic publications and websites, Cousteau did not convert to Islam, and when he died he was buried in a Roman Catholic Christian funeral. He was buried in the family vault at Saint-André-de-Cubzac in France. A street was named "rue du Commandant Cousteau" in a street which runs near his native house, where a commemorative plaque was affixed.
Honors[change | change source]
During his lifetime, Jacques-Yves Cousteau received these awards:
- Commandeur de la Légion d'Honneur
- Grand-Croix de l'Ordre national du Mérite
- Croix de guerre 1939–1945
- Officier de l'Ordre du Mérite Maritime
- Commandeur de l'Ordre des Arts et des Lettres
- Honorary Companion of the Order of Australia.
- National Geographic Society's Special Gold Medal in 1961
- BAFTA Academy Fellowship Award - a lifetime achievement award for his movies
References[change | change source]
- Cousteau Society
- The Cousteau Foundation page about "The Captain" confirms Cousteau biography as written here.
- Témoignage: La "conversion" du commandant Cousteau à l'Islam (French)