Australia Thai cave rescue: Australian doctor who was last one out now grieving father's death

05:55  11 july  2018
05:55  11 july  2018 Source:   abc.net.au

Elon Musk has offered to help rescue the Thai soccer team stuck in a cave

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Thai cave rescue operation begins for last trapped boys. An international team of rescuers has gone back into the northern Thailand cave to bring out the remaining four boys and their coach, who have been trapped for 18 days.

A South Australian doctor is among the experts involved in the rescue mission to retrieve 12 Dr Richard Harris, an anaesthetist with more than 30 years of diving experience, flew to Thailand last week. Thai cave rescue underway: officials confirm operation has begun – live updates.

Dr Richard Harris.© AAP Dr Richard Harris. The Australian doctor who was the last man out of the Thai cave following the rescue of the Wild Boars soccer team found out shortly afterwards his father had died.

Dr Harris's boss, Dr Andrew Pearce, says he has spoken with "Harry", as he is known.

"This is clearly a time of grief for the Harris family, magnified by the physical and emotional demands of being part of this week's highly complex and ultimately successful rescue operation," Dr Pearce said.

"He will be coming home soon and taking some well-earned time off to be with his family. He has asked that the family's privacy is respected at this time."

"Today is D-Day": Rescuers begin mission to extract Thai cave boys

  "Today is D-Day": Rescuers begin mission to extract Thai cave boysThirteen foreign divers and five members of Thailand's elite navy SEAL unit would attempt to bring the boys – some of whom are as young as 11 and not strong swimmers – through narrow, submerged passageways that claimed the life of a former Thai navy diver earlier this week.

Thailand cave rescue : how did the boys get out ? All of the 12 Thai boys who became stranded inside a flooded cave network have been rescued , along with their coach. Eight boys now freed in daring rescues from Thai cave .

Australian doctor inside the cave decided to bring out the weakest kids first as cave conditions have been the best in days. Thai navy Seals pay tribute to diver who died in cave rescue .

Adelaide anaesthetist Dr Harris was meant to be on holiday but instead found himself putting his own life at risk to venture into the Chiang Rai cave to medically assess the 12 boys and their coach trapped inside.

While the world celebrated the survival of all 12 boys and their coach, Dr Harris and three Navy SEALS were still making their way out. They would emerge several hours later.

He was part of a team of 20 Australians involved in the Thai-led rescue effort, which included his West Australian dive partner, six Federal Police divers, the Navy clearance diver and members of the Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade Crisis Rescue Team.

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  Healthy and demanding fried rice: first boys rescued from Thai cave in hospital The first four boys rescued from a flooded cave in northern Thailand were in good health and demanding fried rice in hospital on Monday, the head of the rescue team said, as divers resumed operations to bring out the remaining members of the group. The bid to rescue the boys - aged between 11 and 16 - and their 25-year-old soccer coach got going again after a break late on Sunday to replenish the team's oxygen supplies and make other preparations deep inside the cave.

Thai cave rescue operation begins for last trapped boys. An international team of rescuers has gone back into the northern Thailand cave to bring out the remaining four boys and their coach, who have been trapped for 18 days.

Divers have entered a northern Thailand cave to retrieve the last four members of a football team and their coach on what rescuers hope will be the final day of the mission to Thailand cave rescue : how are the boys getting out ? “ Doctors have treated the boys and now all of them are OK and cheerful.

Dr Harris responded to the call for help from Thai authorities when he was named specifically by the British diving team leading the mission as the best person for the job, with his medical skills and 30 years diving experience.

Minister for Foreign Affairs Julie Bishop said it took an incredible team effort to rescue the boys, with Dr Harris playing a key role.

"He was an integral part of the rescue attempt," she told the ABC.

"He was specifically identified by the British diving team as an expert whose skills would be required and he was asked for at the highest levels within the Thai Government and fortunately he was able to go to Chiang Rai and be part of the rescue.

"He is internationally renowned for his expertise in cave rescues.

"He's very well known to us in the Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade because he's part of the Australian Medical Assistance Team that goes overseas under our aid programme to support developing countries."

Some of the same divers who pulled the first 4 boys out of the Thai cave went back to rescue the 2nd group of 4 — traversing 10 miles to do so

  Some of the same divers who pulled the first 4 boys out of the Thai cave went back to rescue the 2nd group of 4 — traversing 10 miles to do so Rescuers have evacuated eight boys from a cave in northern Thailand after diver<g class="gr_ gr_4 gr-alert gr_gramm gr_inline_cards gr_run_anim Grammar only-ins replaceWithoutSep" data-gr-id="4" id="4">s to guid</g>e the boys over two miles back to the cave's entrance.&nbsp;Some divers rescuing the boys trapped in a cave in northern Thailand have traversed about 10 miles over the past two days.

An Aussie doctor was reportedly responsible for persuading rescuers to change their strategy and pull the weakest boys out first . Footage of Saman Kunan, Thai cave volunteer who died trying to save trapped schoolboys, preparing to fly out to join rescue mission.

An international team of rescuers have gone back into the northern Thailand cave to bring out the remaining four boys and their coach, who have been trapped for 18 days. Eight boys now freed in daring rescues from Thai cave .

British divers found the team in the labyrinth of flooded caves on July 2 after they had been missing for nine days.

Ms Bishop said all the Australians involved would be in line for formal recognition of their actions.

"Clearly this has been an extraordinary team effort. We've been part of the Thai-led international effort.

"Dr Harris's role has been quite extraordinary and I'm hoping that we'll be in a position to thank all of our rescue team when they return to Australia."

Thailand's Navy SEALs, who were central to the rescue effort, said on their Facebook page the remaining four boys and their 25-year-old coach were all brought out safely early on Tuesday evening (local time).

Harris decided what order the trapped boys should leave the cave

Dr Harris assessed the health of the boys and their coach, determining who needed to get out of the cave quickest and who could wait longer.

Australian Medical Association (AMA) President Dr Tony Bartone said Dr Harris put his own safety on the line to help others and should be commended.

"Dr Harris's efforts here are nothing short of absolutely exceptional and beyond and above the call of duty, but that's typical of many of the doctors that make up the medical profession in Australia," he said.

Thai Cave Rescue Movie in Early Stages of Development

  Thai Cave Rescue Movie in Early Stages of Development The Thai cave rescue operation will likely soon get the movie treatment.&nbsp;Pure Flix Entertainment is seeking the movie rights about the mission to rescue a dozen boys and their soccer coach who were trapped deep within a labyrinth.

First boys rescued from Thai cave - video. Australian doctor inside the cave decided to bring out the weakest kids first as cave conditions have been the best in days.

Now reading: Australian doctor with ‘unique skills’ plays pivotal role in Thai cave rescue . It was on his advice that the first four boys were cleared to make the incredibly dangerous journey out of the flooded cave complex, emerging alive on Sunday night.

The AMA tweeted that Dr Harris was "an amazing doctor and human being".

Bill Griggs, who used to be Dr Harris' boss at South Australia's emergency medical retrieval service, MedSTAR, where the anaesthetist still works, said it was his rare skill set that made Thai authorities seek him out.

"To do cave-diving, you have to be all about attention to detail and you have to be meticulous," Dr Griggs told ABC radio.

"The combination of his medical knowledge and his cave-diving skills was clearly (why) the British guys requested that he come as well."

Dr Griggs said it was likely Dr Harris would be a reluctant hero over his role in the successful rescues.

"I suspect 'Harry' will feel much the same as others, and I, have felt," he said.

"When you've been a part of a team, you really feel at little bit embarrassed, or sheepish, about [the accolades] because it is a big team effort."

Aussie Thai cave divers will be honoured .
Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull says Australian divers involved in rescuing the boys stuck in a flooded Thai cave will be honoured.Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull said the Australians involved in the rescue will be given civilian honours for their part in the international effort.

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