A British diver who helped save a team of youth soccer players from a Thai cave last year had to be rescued himself Wednesday after getting stuck in a cave in Tennessee.
Josh Bratchley, who was honored by Queen Elizabeth ll for his role in the Thai rescue, was rescued from the Mill Pond Cave in Jackson County more than 24 hours after his friends noticed he was missing.
Bratchley, 27, had entered the cave with two friends on Tuesday, but the group became separated when their guideline rope broke.
Edd Sorenson, a veteran cave diver who has rescued dozens of people over the years, was flown in from Florida on Wednesday to help rescue Bratchley on the recommendation of Jason Richards, the first person to explore and map the cave in 2017.
“That line is the only way to get out. When he lost that line, he had no chance,” Sorenson told The Washington Post.
“Everyone was concerned that this was a recovery mission,” Joey Denson, captain of the Jackson County Rescue Squad, added.
Bratchley quickly realized continuing to swim around wasn’t the best idea so he found an air bubble, took off his gear and sat on a rock, the paper reported.
Sorenson entered the Mill Pond Cave at 6 p.m. Wednesday and brought Bratchley to safety just under an hour later after assessing whether he was OK to make the journey out.
Apparently, Bratchley didn’t even go to the hospital after the ordeal, according to the Post.
He just wanted some pizza.