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Nine Australians awarded bravery medals for Thai cave rescue

Those awarded were involved in rescuing 12 boys and their soccer coach from a flooded cave in Thailand. (Royal Thai Navy via AP)

Nine Australians involved in rescuing 12 boys and their soccer coach from a flooded cave in Thailand have been awarded bravery medals for putting their lives in danger during the treacherous ordeal.

Governor-General Peter Cosgrove said in a statement on Tuesday that anesthetist Richard Harris and his dive buddy Craig Challen have been awarded the Star of Courage, the second highest civilian bravery decoration in the Australian honors system after the Cross of Valor.

Six police and a navy diver received the lesser Bravery Medal. Their citations say Harris and Challen displayed conspicuous bravery in the operation that resulted in all 13 members of a soccer team being rescued between July 8 and 10.

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