MAE SAI, Thailand (CBSDFW.COM/CBSNEWS.COM) – It’s the news the entire world has been waiting more than two weeks to hear. The entire Wild Boar youth soccer team and their coach have been safely removed from a cave in Thailand.
The 12th member of the team was brought out of the cave on a stretcher only about eight hours after officials announced Tuesday’s 3rd phase of the rescue operation had begun. The 25-year-old assistant coach was the last out.
Water drained from the cave helped reduce the fast-moving current and allowed the boys to walk in some parts previously flooded.
The team had been trapped in the cave for about two-and-a-half weeks when the third and final rescue mission wrapped up this morning.
The conditions of the boys pulled out of the cave on Tuesday, and their coach, remain unclear.
Four boys were rescued Sunday and an additional four emerged Monday.
As for the health of the eight boys first rescued, Thailand’s Permanent Secretary of Ministry of Public Health, Jedsada Chokdumrongsuk, said, “Preliminarily, they had low body temperatures. So we’re taking care of them with body heating equipment.”
The minister of health also said some of the boys rescued have infections but are otherwise in good health.
Soccer’s governing body, FIFA, has invited the boys to the World Cup final in Moscow on sundae if they’re well enough to attend. Doctors, though, say they’ll have to remain in the hospital for treatment for at least a week, insisting they can watch the big game on TV.
The boys, ages 11-16, and their 25-year-old coach became stranded when they went exploring inside after a practice game. Monsoon flooding blocked off their escape and prevented rescuers from finding them for almost 10 days.