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The rescuers trying to help a youth soccer team stranded in a Thai cave suffered a disheartening loss Friday with the death of a former SEAL diving in the flooded passageways to deliver supplies, as authorities raced against worsening weather and lessening oxygen where the 12 boys and their coach have been trapped for two weeks.

But it looks like authorities are more determined to attempt a rescue right now.

The image showed Samarn Kunan standing with the rest of the volunteers prior to him going on a mission that involved him placing oxygen canisters in the cave.

"We won't let his life be in vain".

The trapped boys' spirits were surely lifted on Friday when they discovered they had been invited to attend the World Cup final in Moscow if they make it out in time.

Former Sgt. Saman Kunan, an ex-SEAL, died at 2:00 a.m. Friday local time (2 p.m. Thursday ET) due to a lack of air while attempting to return to a command center deep underground, Chiang Rai Deputy Governor Passakorn Boonyalak said. REUTERS/Stinger THAILAND OUT. NO COMMERCIAL OR EDITORIAL SALES IN THAILAND.

Oxygen was being depleted by the large number of people working inside the cave network, said the Chiang Rai Governor, Narongsak Osotthanakorn.

A firefighter who has been working on draining the water said parts of a passage leading to the chamber where the group was found Monday was still flooded to its ceiling, making diving the only way out.

Katadzic has not dived the final kilometre to where the boys are stranded on a muddy bank, the most unsafe part of the dive where rescuers have to hold their oxygen tanks in front of them to squeeze through submerged holes.

A Navy SEAL working with an global rescue team to save a soccer team stuck in a cave in Thailand has died, local authorities said.

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"There will be rain and many things could go wrong". "I want to say thanks for all the support and I want to apologise to the parents".

Rescuers, including global teams, are considering alternative ways to bring the group out before heavy rains hit the country's north next week which could further hamper the rescue operation.

"Authorities have not lost courage because of this", Thassada Thangkachan told reporters in Bangkok.

But there are mounting concerns about the oxygen level in the chamber, which officials said had fallen to 15 percent from the usual level of 21 percent.

The doctor's report on Thursday said that two of the boys and the coach are suffering exhaustion from malnutrition.

Rescuers and volunteers in the region have been pumping water out of the cave in an effort to clear the passageways. Attention has now turned to how to get the group back out through several kilometres of dangerously flooded tunnels. Video taken July 5, 2018.

But getting them out won't be easy. Some boys also don't know how to swim.

Thailand's Underwater Demolition Assault Unit, the agency in charge of extraction, is evaluating the risk of taking the group out, and though the boys have been practicing wearing diving masks and breathing, it doesn't appear they have yet practiced diving, Osatanakorn said.

The navy has raised the possibility that the 13 could be in the Tham Luang cave in Chiang Rai province until the flood waters recede, at the end of the rainy season in four months.

Thailand's monsoon typically begins in July and lasts through October, a spokeswoman for the World Meteorological Organization told Business Insider. As of late Tuesday, about 120 million liters of water have been pumped out of the cave.