The first pictures of the Wild Boars football team have been released and show the boys smiling and waving.
The boys were pictured looking healthy in hospital issue white gowns, either sitting in bed or walking around their rooms at the Chiangi Rai hospital.
Other incredible images show a parent of one of the boys watching, crying, through a glass wall. The boys are considered to be healthy but still have yet to be cleared from quarantine.
“The children should not be blamed for the incident,” he said.
Governor Narongsak Osotthanakorn said a life had been sacrificed to make the mission a success. “We have lost petty officer first-class Saman Kunan. We will remember him as a hero. We used his determination to push through and make this a success.
“I have also been informed by the Prime Minister, who received a call from Ms Julie Bishop, the Australian Foreign Minister, on the passing of Dr Richard Harris’s father.
“I would like to express my deepest condolences for his great loss, and thank him for his contribution, for without him this mission would not have been a success.”
Dr Harris is an Australian diver who played a vital role in the rescue.
Mr Narongsak provided new details about the rescue effort that captured the attention of the entire world.
At a crucial stage of the rescue mission, as the kids grew weaker, oxygen levels began dropping alarmingly.
“But for this task we had to put in the best performance, so we put oxygen tanks in many spots in the cave. We had to make the decision.
“One of the really important things was the pumping teams. Both inside the cave and outside the cave, they were really important. And there was another team diverting water.”
The 12 boys will be monitored for days to come so doctors can be sure they are mentally strong enough to be released.
Mr Narongsak would not give exact details of how and why the boys entered the cave with their coach.
“What happened was a misfortune that no one would like to see happen.”