Brit cave divers: We feared rescue mission was just a ‘corpse run’

HEROES: Divers back at Heathrow

BRITISH divers who found the Thai football team trapped in a flooded cave thought they were going on a “corpse run”.

Rick Stanton and John Volanthen located the 13 teenagers and their coach nine days after they went missing underground.

Yesterday, the pair and their fellow British rescue team members arrived back at Heathow Airport after helping bring the group out alive.

Former fireman Rick said: “Are we heroes? No, we were just using a very unique skill set.”

The British experts were called in by Thai-based caver Vern Unsworth. The 63-year-old, from St Albans, Herts, said he had expected a “high rate of attrition” in terms of the boys’ survival.

He added: “Just to get any of them out alive would have been a miracle.

But to get 13 out of 13 – won’t happen again. It’s the biggest miracle ever.”

Rick added: “This was completely uncharted, unprecedented territory and nothing like this has been done. So, of course, there were doubts.”

Fellow Brit rescuers Chris Jewell, Connor Roe, Josh Bratchley, Mike Clayton and Gary Mitchell, along with Jim Warny, from Ireland, also returned yesterday.

Chris said: “It was a successful outcome and we played a part in an international effort.

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