Thai Soccer Team Rescued from Cave Cried Remembering Diver Who Died Trying to Save Them

The 12 soccer team boys who were rescued after spending nearly three weeks stuck inside a cave in Thailand mourned the death of Saman Kunan, a former navy Seal who died after delivering an oxygen supply to them earlier this month.

Related: Who was Saman Kunan? Thai cave rescue diver died trying to save soccer team

Kunan reportedly ran out of air while trying to make his way out of the Tham Luang Nang Non cave and was pronounced dead on July 6, and doctors asked the relatives of the boys to inform them of his death last week, Thai Public Health Ministry permanent secretary Dr. Jedsada Chokedamrongsook said, according to CNN Sunday.

"All cried and expressed their condolences by writing messages on a drawing of Lieutenant Commander Saman and observed one minute of silence for him," the health ministry said in a statement.

In photos the health ministry released, the boys, ages 11 to 16, are shown standing around a sketch of Kunan and bowing their heads. The teary-eyed boys wrote messages to Kunan, who was 38.

"They also thanked him and promised to be good boys," the statement read.

Chokedamrongsook said that sentiments around the difficult rescue, which was executed over three days last week, were not centered on blaming the boys and their 25-year-old coach for entering the cave, against better judgment.

"I understand that everyone is worried and have good wishes for them," Chokedamrongsook said. "[We] don't want to blame or accuse anyone [of what happened]. I want this time to become a period to help or support each other –to be a beautiful moment for all people across the country."

The boys will be discharged from Chiang Rai Prachanukroh Hospital by Thursday, Public Health Minister Dr. Piyasakol Sakolsattayatorn said Saturday. They got trapped in the cave on June 23 when flood water prevented them from exiting, and some suffered minor lung and ear infections.

"All of the 13 people, their physical bodies are strong and fit. Regarding infections, through the medical evaluations in the first days there may be some of them that had minor pneumonia, but now all is cleared, no fever," Piyasakol said.

Kunan had retired from the Navy as a sergeant and served as an airport security officer and was a triathlete and avid biker and runner. He was a volunteer in the diving mission to save the boys.

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Mourning-coach and government officers leave after delivering the body of Saman Kunan, 38, a former Thai navy Seal who died, to a flight back to his hometown in Roi Et on July 6 in Chiang Rai, Thailand. Linh Pham/Getty Images

Military guards carried Kunan's body during a repatriation ceremony and army members saluted as his body was flown to his hometown. Thai navy Seals in a tribute to Kunan said, "His effort and determination will always remain the hearts of all divers."

Military guards carried Kunan's body during a repatriation ceremony and army members saluted as his body was flown to his hometown. Thai navy Seals in a tribute to Kunan said, "His effort and determination will always remain the hearts of all divers."

Thai Soccer Team Rescued from Cave Cried Remembering Diver Who Died Trying to Save Them | World