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Rescued Team Marks Anniversary with Marathon

Event raises money for improvements at cave
By Bob Cronin,  Newser Staff
Posted Jun 23, 2019 11:27 AM CDT
Members of the Wild Boars soccer team, who were rescued from a flooded cave, pose Sunday for the media after a marathon and biking event in Mae Sai, Chiang Rai province, Thailand.   (AP Photo/Sakchai Lalit)

(Newser) – Members of the Thai soccer team who were trapped in a flooded cave ran a marathon Sunday to celebrate their rescue one year ago. About 4,000 people participated in the run and bike event in the town of Mae Sai, per Sky News. The boys, who were 11 to 16 at the time, entered Tham Luang cave last June and became trapped by rising water. Divers reached them 10 days later and took them out safely. "Not many children could have survived the way they did, so we have to respect them for that," British diver Vernon Unsworth, who was involved in the rescue, said Sunday.

The event was a fundraiser to improve conditions at the cave, ABC reports, which now attracts tourists from all over the world. A year ago, the site had only dirt roads, but renovations include paved roads, facilities for the crowds, and shops. "The economy around here keeps getting better," said a shop owner who sells rescue memorabilia. The attention seems unlikely to abate; the rights to the boys' story have been acquired by Netflix. "What we should do right now," Unsworth said, "is to just let them get on with their lives." (Read more Thai cave rescue stories.)

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