Everyone is Safe. Meet The Unsung Heroes Behind Thailand's Cave Rescue
“Everyone is safe.” With those three words posted on Facebook the daring rescue mission to extricate 12 boys and their soccer coach from the treacherous confines of a flooded cave in Thailand was complete — a grueling 18-day ordeal that claimed the life of an experienced diver and riveted people worldwide.
Thailand’s Navy SEALs, according to TIME.come, who was central to the rescue effort, celebrated the feat with a post-Tuesday evening that read: “All the thirteen Wild Boars are now out of the cave,” — a reference to the boys’ soccer team. “We are not sure if this is a miracle, a science, or what.”
Eight of the boys were rescued by a team of Thai and international divers on Sunday and Monday. On Tuesday, the final four boys and their coach were guided out of the cave. Their rescue was followed a few hours later by the safe return of a medic and three SEAL divers who had stayed for days with the boys in their cramped, dry refuge.
Cheers erupted from the dozens of volunteers and journalists awaiting news of whether the intricate and high-risk rescue mission had succeeded. Helicopters transporting the boys roared overhead. People on the street cheered and clapped when ambulances ferrying them on the last leg of their journey from the cave arrived at a hospital in Chiang Rai city in far northern Thailand near the Myanmar border.
Their joy and relief were echoed around the globe by the multitude of people who had followed the long ordeal.
Indeed, what caught the Seasia's attention is those who are indirectly addressed as the unsung heroes behind the rescue scenes which made the search and rescue operation meet its successful point.
As compiled by a lady named Anindya Ghose in her Facebook, here are those who have played significant, important and unjustified roles throughout days spent at the scene:
1. This mission probably wouldn't have started without him. He's a British explorer who has discovered this cave before. He was the one who wrote the map for the rescue team and the one who wrote the letter asking for help from the 3 British divers (the world's best cave divers).
2. The Coach! Ekapol Chanthawong lost his whole family as a kid. He trained as a monk and then devoted his life to helping kids. He kept these 12 children alive in a cave by teaching them meditation, giving all his food and most of his water to them for 9 days. He is only 25.
3. Saman Guran (ex Thai Navy SEAL) gave up his life so that the trapped kids and the coach could have enough supply of oxygen which had fallen to 15 percent in their part of the cave. Petty Officer Saman Gunan lost consciousness on his way out of the Tham Luang cave complex, where he had been delivering air tanks, and died shortly after.
4. These two British men who are leading the rescue operation are John Volanthen and Rick Stanton. They are universally regarded as the best cave divers in the world.
They are the first port of call for governments around the world to lead rescue missions & do not seek fame, money or praise. Selfless heroes. Rick Stanton is a retired firefighter awarded honors for bravery in rescuing people from a burning building. John Volanthen has been recognized with honors by France, Mexico, UK and others for his bravery in cave rescue missions.
The risk these men took to save these boys is nothing short of awe-inspiring. The support they received from international divers & Thai Navy Seals was beautiful. The best of humanity.
5. People are coming from hundreds of kilometers away on bikes or cycles just for cooking and delivering food for the rescue team for free for 2 weeks and counting.
6. She is the owner of the local washing machine store. She and her team of cleaners have been doing free-washing and dry cleaning of the rescue team's and divers' clothes everyday.
7. The descriptions of these pics are self-explanatory. They are heroes, truly.
8. The farmers who sacrificed their fields so that the water could be pumped out from the caves. They have lost an year's worth of produce and yet they have absolutely no regrets. Rather they want to do more.
9. The hundreds of volunteers who have been working non-stop for the past two weeks. They come in all shapes and sizes.
10. The small business owner of diving gear and oxygen cylinders who gave it all for free to the Thai and international cave divers for the rescue mission. Remember these are not companies or corporations.
They are SMEs at best.
11. She realized that the Muslim cave divers needed Halal food. She and her team have been cooking for them Halal food non-stop for the past two weeks. For free.
Source : TIME.com and Facebook