The 12 young Thai boys at the center of a nail-biting rescue mission in a flooded cave last week are mourning the former Thai navy SEAL who died trying to save them after they were finally told on Saturday of his sacrifice. The health ministry announced Sunday that the boys, still recovering in a hospital after weeks of being trapped in the cave, were spared the tragic news until now because doctors feared they were too weak to process it. “All cried and expressed their condolences by writing messages on a drawing of Lieutenant Commander Saman [Gunan] and observed one minute of silence for him,” Jedsada Chokdamrongsuk, permanent secretary at the health ministry, was quoted as saying by the BBC. “They also thanked him and promised to be good boys,” the ministry said. The volunteer diver was the only fatality of the dangerous rescue mission, which was successfully carried out last week after days of planning. He died on July 6 after running out of oxygen on his way out of the flooded passageways.