Two Australian divers who helped rescue 12 boys and their football coach from a flooded cave in Thailand will receive civilian honours, Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull announced on Tuesday. Turnbull confirmed that the unspecified honours would be awarded to Richard Harris, an anaesthetist, and Craig Challen, a vet, reports the BBC.
The men entered the Tham Luang cave as part of the international rescue. It embodied “every Australian value we hold dear”, Turnbull said.
“That is one of the most extraordinary acts of heroism, professionalism, discipline (and) teamwork,” Turnbull said. Harris was one of the last rescuers to emerge from the cave after three days of the mission to extract the Wild Boars football team and their coach last week.
The Australian men and other divers, including a former Thai Navy Seal who died in the operation, have been lauded around the world. The Wild Boars had spent nine days in the cave with little food or light when British divers first reached them on July 2.
The boys, aged 11-16, and their coach, have been recovering in hospital. They are expected to be discharged on Thursday.