Last update of this page: 14 July 2018


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14 y.o.
Also spelled Ardoon Sam-aon or Adun Samon.


Adul is from the indigenous hill tribe and was born in the neighbouring country of Myanmar in the Wa state, a self-ruled region that is not recognised by Myanmar or Thailand, nor internationally. He is one of the four members of the team who are stateless ethnic minorities in Thailand. At age seven, Adul was left behind by his parents and remained in Thailand so that he could get an education.

He was taken into care by the local Mae Sai Grace Church group, an Christian Evangelical group, said school director Punnawit Thepsurin. Adul is an eighth-grade student at Ban Wiang Phan School. He plays as a left-winger/mid-fielder soccer . He is described as extremely intelligent and speaks five languages - Wa, Thai, Burmese, Chinese and English. He gets free tuition as well as a daily lunch because of his academic record and sporting prowess.

His English skills have won him the admiration of millions in Thailand, where fewer than 30% of the population speak the language. According to local news outlets, his knowledge of English comes from his involvement in church activities. Like many students in Thailand's Mae Sai district, he commutes over the border every day.

"He's a good student, he earns a GPA of 3.94 out of 4.00. He's also a good athlete, his favorite sports are soccer and volley ball. He's very known and liked. He's a champion," Thepsurin said.
Wimonchat Jittalom, an English teacher at the school, said she was "so proud" that Dul had been able to communicate with the British divers who first found the boys.
"Not only did he understand the question, but he was able to answer correctly!" said Jittalom.


In video posted on Facebook by Thai Navy SEAL special forces, Adul can be heard speaking in English to the British rescuer who found the boys, as they sit on a ledge above water in a cavern, picked out by torchlight.
Rescuer: "Hello, is anyone there?"
Adul: "Hello."
Rescuer: " Hello. "
Adul: "Hello."
Rescuer: "We found them. We found them! Raise your hands."
Adul: "Thank you. Thank you."
Rescuer: "How many of you?"
Adul: "Thirteen!"
Rescuer: "Thirteen? Brilliant!"
Boys: "Yeah, yeah."
The group appear to ask when they will be taken to safety and one of the unseen rescuers replies: "Not today. Not today. Just two of us. We have to dive. We are coming. It's OK? Many people are coming. Many, many people.We are the first. Many people come."
Adul: (in Thai) "The diver says not today."
One of the boys, noticing the camera and hearing unfamiliar words, says in Thai, "Oh, they want to take a picture; tell him we're hungry. I haven't had anything to eat."
Then the boys breaks into simple English, saying, "Eat, eat, eat!" to which Adul responds (in Thai) "I've already told that to the rescuer.
A boy: "What day?"
Rescuer: "Tomorrow."
Then Adul asks, "How many days have we been in here?"
Rescuers to each other: "No, no, no, what day is it they are asking." The british divers pause, then one of them replies, "Monday, Monday. Okay but one week and Monday. You have been here... 10 days. You are very strong. Very strong."
A boy in Thai: "Who knows English? Translate for us." Another boy, in Thai: "I can't keep ut with the words."
The divers explain that they have to leave but will be back : "Let's go up. Okay go back. We come, we come."
Adul: "We are hungry."
Rescuer: "I know, I know, I understand. We'll come, okay? We'll come."
Adul, in Thai: "Go up top, go up together. They will take our photos first."
A boy in Thai. "Tell them we are hugry."
Adul, in Thai: "I've told them, they know." then in Eglish: "What day you come to help us?"
Rescuer: "We come here. We have been diving for ... Yeah, tomorrov, we hope.Tomorrow. The Thai Navy, the Navy. Navy Seal will come tomorrow.With food and doctor and everything."
Rescuer: "Today, you have a light.. We'll give you more light. You go up, okay? Up, up."
The rescuer gives the boys an extra light as the camera jags around and the audio fails
A boy, in Thai: "Come up, brother. Get up."
Adul: "That looks fun."
Boys: "Yeah, yeah."
One of the boys says: "I am very happy."
"We are happy too," the rescuer adds.
"Yes. Thank you so much," said Adul, unfailingly polite despite the urgency of their situation.
Another boy: "Thank you."
Then Adul asks: "Where you come from?"
Rescuer: "England. The UK."
Boys: "Oooohhh."
Adul: "See you tomorrow."


From Adul to his parents
"No need to worry about us anymore. I miss you all. I really want to get out so much. ❤ ❤"

From Aduls's parents
To Adul
Father and mother want to see your face. Father and mother pray for you and your friends, in order to see you soon. After you left the cave, (we) want you to say thank you to every officials, (we) want you to trust in god, no worries, father and mother are awaiting until you come out.
And for Coach Aek, thank you for taking care children and lead the children to safety in the times of staying in the dark.
And Jiji, wish you have strong moral, return to the chest of father and mother in the outside. (We) are waiting outside with love and care too."


Fotos from: Thai Cave Rescue, Thai Rath & Facebook: Ekatol

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