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Thai official who helped rescue young soccer team from cave dies

Narongsak Osottanakorn, the Thai official known for helping rescue twelve boys and their soccer coach from a cave in 2018, has died of cancer. According to BBC, he passed away on Wednesday, June 21, at the age of 58.

Narongsak was known throughout Thailand as the “Wild Boar Governor,” a nickname based on the soccer team he helped save. His death coincided with the fifth anniversary of the cave rescue.

According to WIO News, Narongsak was the governor of Thailand’s Chiang Rai province. As governor, he helped lead efforts to rescue the soccer team who were trapped in the Tham Luang cave for nearly 18 days. He coordinated with rescue groups from the UK, US, China and several other countries.

US Ambassador to Thailand Robert F Godec offered his condolences on Friday, The Bangkok Post reports.

“My deep condolences to Governor Nanongsak’s family, friends and colleagues. I recently visited Tham Luang cave in Chiang Rai and was deeply moved by the stories of his leadership when he managed the international cooperative effort that led to the successful rescue of the Wild Boars team,” Godec wrote in a tweet.

“His legacy will continue as we continue to work together to respond to crises and tackle humanitarian challenges with a collaborative spirit.”

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