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Heroic welcome for Thai Navy SEAL team after Tham Luang success

14 July 2018

Mr Stanton, from Coventry, spoke as he returned to the United Kingdom on Friday morning along with some of the other British divers who took part in the search and rescue mission.

Prachak "Note" Sutham's mother said she was allowed to meet her son in person and to talk to him and hug him for the first time after her son was quarantined at the Chiang Rai Prachanukroh Hospital since being rescued from Tham Luang cave.

Prime Minister Prayuth Chan-ocha said on Thursday global members of the rescue team would be given a "Thailand Elite" card worth 500,000 baht ($15,000) with benefits including a 5-year visa in thanks.

Volanthen also expressed condolences to the family of volunteer diver Saman Gunan, the retired Thai Navy SEAL who lost consciousness during an overnight operation delivering extra air tanks inside the cave and was confirmed dead on Friday. It was very cold at night and pitch dark.

He said: "Initially of course excitement, relief that they were still alive".

Mr Stanton declined to answer any medical questions but said: "They were carefully handled".

"We're not heroes", he told the BBC after arriving back in London.

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Fellow British rescuers John Volanthen and Rick Stanton said that Dr Richard "Harry" Harris had a great relationship with the boys while they were trapped in the cave system, the Herald Sun reports. And then the miracle: they got out. As they were coming down the slope, we were counting them until we got to 13. unbelievable, ' he said. "My job was to transfer them along", former Navy Seal Chaiyananta Peeranarong told the AFP news agency. Seven other Britons in the rescue, five of them divers, were due home on Friday.

The boys, aged 11 to 16, and their 25-year-old coach had planned to explore the cavern complex for about an hour after soccer practice on June 23.

The Thai Navy Seals have released dramatic footage of the operation, giving greater insight into just how risky it was.

"I have never seen anything like it with man battling to control the natural forces of the monsoon waters".

A mother of one of the SEAL members who participated in this operation, Sumalee Maksri, said she was delighted that her son successfully completed his mission, adding that she previously felt anxious because he did not give any details of his assignment.

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Heroic welcome for Thai Navy SEAL team after Tham Luang success