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Captain of ‘Wild Boars’ football team killed himself at UK school, coroner rules


By BBC and Thai Newsroom

THE CAPTAIN of the “Wild Boars” youth football team trapped in a cave for several days in 2018 took his own life while at school in the UK, a coroner has ruled.

The deceased 17-year-old youth. Duangphet Phromthep, or Dom, headed a team of 12 young footballers who together with their coach, Mr.  Ekaphol Chantawong, or coach Aek, were trapped in the flooded Tham Luang cave in Chiang Rai’s Mae Sai district for 17 days  in 2018.

He was found unconscious at Brooke House College in Market Harborough, Leicestershire, on February 12 and died two days later at Kettering General Hospital.

Following an inquest into the 17-year-old’s death, a senior coroner recorded a conclusion of suicide.

In the record of inquest, Prof. Catherine Mason said: “Mr. Phromthep was not known to mental health services, and it is not known why he took the actions that he did.

“It could not have been foreseen or prevented.

“The police investigation has found no evidence of third-party involvement or suspicious circumstances.”

Dom had previously gained worldwide fame as the captain of The Wild Boars football team, or Moo Pa in Thai.

He and his teammates became trapped in the cave after a sudden storm caused flooding which blocked the exit.

Dom turned 13 while trapped in the cave and images of the boys were beamed across the world.

The boys and their 25-year-old coach spent 17 days in darkness without food before they were found by an international search and rescue effort involving about 10,000 people.

Dom’s inquest was opened on February 22 and concluded on October 4 at Leicester Coroner’s Court.

He had enrolled as a student in the football academy at Brooke House College last year.

Principal Ian Smith said: “Our entire college community remains united in grief with Dom’s family, friends and former teammates.

“As a college, the health, wellbeing and welfare of our students is our absolute priority.

“We have robust safeguarding systems in place which enable us to provide appropriate support for students when needed, and we keep these systems under constant review so that we can do everything possible to provide the necessary support to every child.

“Since this tragedy, our dedicated pastoral team has continued to provide support to students and colleagues.

“Dom will always remain a part of the Brooke House family and will be hugely missed.”


Top, second insert and Front Page: Duangphet Phromthep, or Dom, who died in February this year. Photos: Sanook.com

First insert: Dom was a student at Brooke House College in Market Harborough. Photo: BBC

Third insert: The “Wild Boars” youth football team with their coach Mr.  Ekaphol Chantawong. Photo: Sanook.com

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