India's crucial, yet unknown help in Thai Cave Rescue mission

13 July, 2018, 05:41 | Author: Cecil Buchanan
  • Coach Ekk inset starved himself so his team would have more food. Source 7 NewsMore

The Tham Luang cave complex lies under the mountains in Thailand's northernmost province, on the border with Myanmar. The boys range in age from 11 to 16.

On Tuesday evening, all 12 boys and Chanthawong had been rescued following a three-day operation by the Thai Royal Navy and Thai Navy SEALs. "I have to praise the coach who took care of the footballers very well", Lertvirairatanapong said.

The world was gripped after 12 schoolboys and their football coach were saved by divers after being trapped underground for 17 days. Their discovery immediately prompted discussions on how to get them out, with initial reports suggesting that the safest way to rescue the team was to wait out the rainy season, which lasts until October, and guide them out once the flooded tunnels had dried.

Thailand's Navy, whose SEAL unit led the rescue, and the Thai government have selected Ivanhoe Pictures to develop a film that would be directed by John M Chu, the president of Ivanhoe Pictures, John Penotti, said in a statement.

"My job was to transfer them along", he said, adding the "boys were wrapped up in stretchers already when they were being transferred" and were monitored at regular intervals by doctors posted along the kilometres-long escape route.

He did not say if the coach, the only adult with the boys for nine days before they found, was able to dive and walk out unaided.

Parents of the boys have been watching their children at the hospital as they recover and are evaluated by doctors.

Initially, authorities thought they faced a reasonably easy task in getting the boy outs, but rescue efforts were quickly thwarted by rain and rising water levels inside the partially flooded passageways.

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In the video, one of the boys flashed a "victory" hand gesture.

Rescue chief Narongsak Osottanakorn told reporters today that the entire operation would not have been possible without the unique skills that Harris brought to the mission, though he did not elaborate.

The rescue sparked jubilation with Thais heaping praise on the rescue team of foreign and local divers as the triumphant tagline "Hooyah" pinballed across social media.

"We just needed them to know how to breathe and not panic in the water", he said. Wetsuits and scuba gear still hung along a walkway at the entrance Wednesday, waiting to be sorted by Thai Navy officials.

Chaiwetch Thanapaisal is director of Chiang Rai Prachanukroh Hospital. It took the divers about eight hours to get into the cave, reach the boys and bring them back out.

Having completed this section, the boys were then handed over to separate, specialist rescue teams, who helped them through the remainder of the cave, much of which they could wade through.

The boys were eventually rescued, along with their coach, and now Hollywood wants in on the incredible story.

The soccer team went for regular explorations of the cave. "That won't happen or we'll give them hell".

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