Thai Cave Rescue Volunteer and Former Navy SEAL Diver Dies

Diver dies after delivering oxygen for trapped soccer team

What do the letters say?

Former Sgt. Saman Kunan, a Thai ex-SEAL, died at 2 a.m. Friday (2 p.m. Thursday ET), as he returned from an operation to deliver oxygen tanks to the cave where the boys are located.

In one, Pheerapat, nicknamed "Night", whose 16th birthday the group were celebrating in the cave when they became stuck on 23 June, said: "I love you, Dad, Mum and my sister". If I can get out, Mum, Dad please bring me mookatha (BBQ) to eat.

"Think about it, a Navy SEAL just passed away last night, so how about a 12-year-old kid", said Rafael Aroush, an Israeli volunteer helping the rescue bid. "I promise to take the very best care of the kids", he said in a note given to a diver on Friday. "Thank you for your kind support and I would like to say I'm really sorry to you all", he wrote. Some asked for fried chicken, while others simply told their parents that they loved them. Grandpa, uncle, Dad, Mum and brothers.

With teams working around the clock to pump water out of the caves, Elon Musk has sent engineers from two of his companies in Thailand to see if they can help bring the boys out before more rains come.

Another reads: "Tell Coach Ake: Don't think too much".

The letters make for remarkable reading.

At the MyWay garage, where Note's father works, some of the workers have known Note since he was born - and describe him as a smart kid who loves sport and helps his father with mechanical work over the holidays.

The letters are the first messages from the trapped teens to their families. And if any of the boys didn't want to go, they'd wait for their parents to pick them up.

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In a note handed to a diver on Friday, Mr Chantawong promised to take care of the trapped children. "How about a boy who has never dived before?"

Authorities are also continuing to look for other ways out for the boys - including drilling through the cave so they can be extracted without making the perilous five-hour dive all the way to the cave's entrance through narrow, pitch-dark passageways filled with muddy water.

But as recently as two days ago officials said while it was now possible for rescuers to walk about 1.5 kilometres to the third chamber - the main staging point for rescuers - huge volumes of water remained in the cave.

He was part of a team trying to establish an air line to the chamber where the children are awaiting rescue and lay oxygen tanks along the route.

When could the group be rescued?

Military (centre) and civilian police closed off all access to the Tham Luang cave Sunday morning and ordered all "unnecessary personnel" including media to move 2km back as final rescue preparations began. But the prospect of fresh monsoon rains and more flooding threatens to unpick the progress.

Katadzic has not dived the final kilometre to where the boys are stranded on a muddy bank, the most unsafe part of the dive where rescuers have to hold their oxygen tanks in front of them to squeeze through submerged holes.

Narongsak Osotthanakorn said the health of most of the boys had "improved to normal", and that divers were continuing to teach them diving and breathing techniques.

"The water level may rise to the area where the children are sitting and make the area less than 10 square meters", he said, citing estimates from cave divers and experts.

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