Global team of rescuers triumphs in nine-day cave rescue operation in Turkey
40-year-old American Mark Dickey caver was successfully rescued from the Morca cave in Turkey’s southern Mersin province after a grueling nine-day operation involving over 150 international rescuers, the caving federation of Turkey, TUMAF) reported on Tuesday
Dickey, who was part of an international exploration mission in the daunting cave, which is known as the country's third deepest, found himself in a precarious situation more than 1,000 meters (3,300 ft) underground. Reports indicated that he began suffering from a grave gastrointestinal bleeding incident at a depth of 1,040 meters, immobilizing him and necessitating an urgent and complex rescue procedure.
The highly coordinated rescue operation saw teams from Turkey, Croatia, Italy, and other nations rallying together in a display of global solidarity and expertise. With each passing day, the rescuers navigated the narrow, challenging passages of the Morca cave, determined to return Dickey to safety.
In a message disseminated via the social media platform X, previously known as Twitter, TUMAF announced the successful extraction of Dickey from the cave’s clutches: "Dickey was removed from the last exit of the cave," marking the end of the cave rescue segment of the operation. The federation extended its heartfelt congratulations to everyone involved in the operation, noting their immense contributions to its successful outcome.
A clip circulating from earlier stages of the operation revealed an inside glimpse of the harrowing situation. It showed Dickey lying prostrate inside the cave while being attended to by a medical team. In other frames, teams were seen meticulously moving down the caves equipped with ropes, navigating through the treacherously narrow passages that characterize the Morca cave.
Following the rescue, Dickey was promptly taken to a medical tent established at the camp, where he underwent a thorough check-up by the attending healthcare personnel. Italian rescuers overseeing this phase affirmed his transfer and the ongoing evaluation of his health status.