Published: Mon, July 16, 2018
World Media | By Shelia Harmon

Thai Football Team Learn Of The Death Of Rescuer Saman Kunan

Thai Football Team Learn Of The Death Of Rescuer Saman Kunan

Each of the boys, who range in age from 11 to 16, are shown sitting upright in their hospital beds, appearing healthy in hospital gowns and surgical masks.

The Thai boys evacuated from the flooded cave have paid their respects to the former Navy Seal diver who died trying to save them.

Photos released by Thai officials show the boys crowded around a sketch of Kunan with their heads bowed.

They were all extracted on July 10, ending an ordeal that had the world holding its breath for their safe return.

The 12 boys rescued from a flooded cave in Thailand have less than a week before being released to the homes they haven't seen in nearly a month.

The three-day, global rescue operation was successful, and the boys are being held in quarantine while they recover from minor injuries and regain their strength.

Doctors said on Saturday that the coach, 25-year-old Ekkapol "Ake" Chantawong, has gained weight quickly and is physically well, but he is the one they are most concerned about protecting from any mental angst.

He was ordered the Knight Grand Cross (First Class) and given the medal of the Most Exalted Order of the White Elephant.

The 12-member "Wild Boars" team and their coach spent more than two weeks trapped inside a flooded cave in the northern province of Chiang Rai.

The last of the 12-member "Wild Boars" soccer team and their coach were brought out of the Tham Luang cave, near the border with Myanmar, on Tuesday night, safely ending a perilous rescue and evoking global relief and joy.

The youngsters and their coach had been invited to the final of the 2018 World Cup by its organiser, Fifa, but had to decline on medical grounds.

Officials at Chiangrai Prachanukroh Hospital told reporters at Saturday's press conference that all 13 are tentatively scheduled to be discharged Thursday.

It had been suggested by some that the boys and their coach entering the caves during the rainy season was a reckless decision.

A team from around the world staged a spectacular rescue earlier this week.

Around 4,000 volunteers are working to clean up the area around the now-infamous cave, which was battered by relays of rescuers, volunteers and news crews.

Authorities have closed the cave for now but hope to reopen it later as a tourist attraction - with sufficient safeguards in place to make sure no one gets trapped again.

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