Unsung hero: Brit Vern Unsworth started the cave rescue

Elon Musk accuses Vern Unsworth of being a paedophile - Image: Thai Rath

British national Vern Unsworth who lives in Chiang Rai is being hailed as the man who kick started the successful cave rescue that saw the lives of 12 boys and their coach saved.

Vern was the first to react to the impending disaster as he contacted his buddies in England from the DCRO cave rescue team.

He was on hand to brief Robert Harper, Rick Stanton and John Volanthen as soon as they arrived in the north of Thailand.

Vern knew the cave system well having done surveys of the passageways.

Yesterday Thai Rath praised him and published a note showing that he started the operation that eventually led to Mr Stanton and Mr Volanthen being the first to reach the boys.

The note said: “Time is running out! They’re the world’s best cave divers. Please contact them through the UK Embassy ASAP”

Vern’s indomitable spirit was also encapsulated in a Facebook post on the page of Thapanee Ietsrichai that showed him taping up split boots before getting on with the job and going back in the cave.

Thai Rath called him an unsung hero and thanked him for all the work he did.

He is believed to be resident in Chiang Rai. – Thai Rath

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