He Brought Trapped Boys Oxygen, Ran Out on Way Back

Former Navy SEAL has died
By Evann Gastaldo,  Newser Staff
Posted Jul 6, 2018 1:02 AM CDT
Updated Jul 6, 2018 6:54 AM CDT
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This Monday, July 2, 2018, file image released by Tham Luang Rescue Operation Center, shows the missing boys and their soccer coach as they were found in a dark, partially flooded cave, in Mae Sai, Chiang Rai, Thailand.   (Tham Luang Rescue Operation Center via AP, File)

(Newser) – The cave rescue attempt in Thailand has claimed a life. A former Thai navy diver who had just delivered supplies to the 12 boys and their coach trapped in a flooded cave lost consciousness on his way out of the cave and could not be revived, the BBC reports. "His job was to deliver oxygen. He did not have enough on his way back," an official said. Saman Gunan, 38, was a former Navy SEAL who had volunteered to help with the rescue attempt. The Guardian reports his body had been brought to Bangkok where a royal-sponsored funeral will be held. A Thai SEAL commander says more precautions would be taken if the children swim out of the cave, but there may not be much time.

"We can no longer wait for all conditions (to be ready) because circumstances are pressuring us," Thai SEAL commander Arpakorn Yookongkaew told a news conference, per the AP. "We originally thought the boys can stay safe inside the cave for quite some time but circumstances have changed. We have limited amount of time." Rescuers had been concerned they need to get the boys out before heavy rains expected soon, and a new report suggests some may be too weak to make the trip. There are also new concerns about oxygen levels inside the area where the boys are trapped; the BBC reports they've fallen from the normal 21% to 15%, with the AP reporting the drop has been caused by all the rescue workers entering the cave. An oxygen line is being installed.

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