Heroic welcome for Thai Navy SEAL team after Tham Luang success

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Doctors have said they are in good physical and mental health - a view backed up by the footage made available by the Thai government showing them behind quarantine glass in bed wearing smocks and facemasks, flashing peace signs and doing the traditional "wai" greeting. A rescue volunteer, former Thai navy SEAL Saman Kunan, died during the operation when he ran out of oxygen. They will stay in hospital at least a week.

"Meanwhile on the ground, the Thais and worldwide community sent in swarms of men and women to provide everything from catering, communications, media and of course the huge teams of workers filling the cave with tonnes and tonnes of equipment to try and lower the water and sustain the diving operations", Dr Harris wrote.

"We couldn't see them initially - they had to come round the corner".

"He's got a very bouncy Australian accent, and they seemed to find that quite relaxing and reassuring".

"Are we heroes? No", said Rick Stanton, one of the two British divers who found the boys.

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Twelve members of the Wild Boars junior soccer team and their 25-year-old coach were freed from Thailand's Tham Luang Cave earlier this week after spending two weeks trapped inside the flooded cave system.

"And all this time four fearless Navy Seals sat with the Wild Boars knowing they were in as much danger as the kids".

All members of the Wild Boards soccer team were transported by ambulance and helicopter to a hospital in the Thailand province of Chiang Rai, where they will remain until given the all clear from medical professionals.

Mr Stanton was asked how he felt when he first saw the boys alive in the Luang Nang Non Cave. "So there was relief, tempered with uncertainty".

Deputy Prime Minister Prawit Wongsuwan said on Wednesday the operation was nothing short of a miracle.

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On social media, Mr Volanthen has been described as a "real hero" with many calling for him and Mr Stanton to be honoured. "There is a lot of responsibility, that is all I am prepared to say. there is a lot of responsibility that an experienced diver could handle".

"Diving conditions were extremely challenging", said cave diver Chris Jewell.

"It was a successful outcome and we played a part in an worldwide effort". "I'd already counted them, they were already there".

As well as Mr Stanton, fellow divers Chris Jewell and Connor Roe, both from Somerset; Josh Bratchley, from Devon; Jim Warny, from Co Clare, Ireland; Mike Clayton, from Yorkshire; and Gary Mitchell, from Wales, returned to the United Kingdom on Friday. "It will be good to get closure".

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