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Boys Soccer Team & Coach All Rescued

PostPosted: July 10th, 2018, 10:12 am
by toucana
Thai authorities have confirmed that all 12 members of a boys soccer team and their coach have been rescued from a flooded cave system in the northern Chiang Rai district of Thailand.

The party had been trapped by rising floodwaters for the last 15 days in Tham Luang Nan Don, a Karstic cave complex located beneath the Doi Nang Non mountain range.

An international team of cave diving experts from around the world have been working round the clock with Thai navy SEAL specialists to find a way of extracting the group safely.

British divers located the missing boys deep within the complex on 2 July, nine days after they went missing. A wide variety of rescue options had been canvassed, but intensifying monsoon rains forced the rescue planners to go with the riskiest option of all - fitting the boys with dive masks and oxygen tanks, and bringing them out one-by-one under the supervision of expert cave divers.

Relief at the safe rescue of the party will be tempered by the sad death of Saman Kunan 38, a former Thai SEAL diver who ran out of air and asphyxiated on a return trip from delivering fresh supplies of air to the party.

Re: Boys Soccer Team & Coach All Rescued

PostPosted: July 11th, 2018, 5:21 am
by toucana
An interesting article in PerthNow sheds more light on the background of this story.

Many of the boys of the Moo Pa (Wild Boars) football team were very poor polyglot paperless and stateless hill tribe lads. One of them, Adul Samon, who was the boy filmed speaking to the British divers who first found them comes from the autonomous Wa state in NE Myanmar and actually speaks four languages, Thai, Chinese, Burmese and English.

The team coach Ekapol Chanthawong who was criticised by some on social media was in fact the first rescuer. The boys originally went in to explore the mysterious Thang Luam caves on their own. It was the coach who went in after them, when the boys bicycles were found abandoned near the cave entrance, after their parents reported them missing.

Ekapol Chanthawong who is himself a stateless person of Burmese parentage had studied as a Buddhist monk before becoming a youth worker and founder of the boys football team. He is credited with helping the children to survive and remain calm by teaching them how to meditate as they waited for rescuers to arrive.