THE parents of a submariner who died in an underwater explosion have spoken of the importance of an “open and honest”

investigation into his death.

Alan Huntrod, 56, and Brenda Gooch, 47, of Town End Farm, Sunderland, were speaking at the start of the inquest into the death of their son, Anthony Huntrod.

The 20-year-old Royal Navy submariner was one of two men who died in the explosion in the Arctic.

The blast, in which Paul Mc- Cann, from the West Midlands, also died, happened on HMS Tireless on March 21, 2007, during a training exercise.

His parents said: “An open and honest inquest is what is needed in order to find some acceptance for the loss of Anthony.

“It is not just for us, but for all those who have to live with that fateful night when fellow submariners and friends died.

“This inquest is about speaking up for Anthony, whose life was taken away. We hope it will help us to move forward.

“However, we fear complete closure will never happen. It is something we feel is impossible after losing our child.”

By Gavin Havery The former Castle View School pupil joined the Royal Navy when he was 18 and passed out after eight weeks from HMS Raleigh, in Plymouth, on his 19th birthday.

It is believed an oxygen device contaminated with oil is responsible for the blast that killed him.

He was buried with full naval honours. After the accident, which left another crew member seriously injured, the Government issued an apology.

An inquest, which could last six weeks, is being opened today at Sunderland Coroners’ Court.

More than 100 witnesses will be called to ascertain the circumstances surrounding the explosion.

Officers ranked as high as admiral, and senior civil servants have been asked to attend.

Andrew McDonald from Thompsons Solicitors, which represents the family, said: “This inquest is an important milestone.

“It will be a long process with over 100 witnesses, but we hope it will provide some much-needed answers on what happened to cause an incident with such devastating results during a peacetime training exercise.”