Who Is Josh Bratchley? New Details On The Incredible Rescue Of The Missing Cave Diver

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Who Is Josh Bratchley? New Details On The Incredible Rescue Of The Missing Cave Diver

Who is Josh Bratchley?

Bratchley is an expert cave diver who is well known for being a part of a handpicked and heroic rescue team in 2018. Bratchley spends a lot of time in cold water since caving and cave diving are his two favorite hobbies. On his Facebook page, he often shares pictures and videos of his diving experiences with captions that confirm his location and explain his mission. In an interview with the Met Office Blog, Bratchley briefly explained his background in cave diving. “I have trained for years with the UK Cave Diving Group, which is the oldest amateur diving club in the world,” he said. “I’d only recently returned in April from an expedition to the cave systems under the Sierra Mazateca mountains in Mexico, where we were camping for over a week at a time in caverns beyond flooded passages.”

According to his LinkedIn, before training with the UK Cave Diving Group, Bratchley was involved in various activities and societies including the Adventure & Expedition Club, the Sailing & Powerboat Club, the Muay Thai Club and All Terrain Borders at the University of Plymouth. He received a Bachelor of Science degree in Meteorology, Oceanography in 2013 from the university.  Bratchley is also an amateur photographer who concentrates on cave, exploration and travel photography.

Here's everything you need to know about Josh Bratchley and how he was rescued from a Tennessee cave.  


British diver Josh Bratchley was rescued from a Tennessee cave. 

1. He is an operational meteorologist 

When he isn't spending time cave diving, Bratchley works at the Met Office as an Operational Meteorologist. He has been in this position for three years. According to his LinkedIn, Bratchley has a strong interest in weather related studies and therefore enjoys his career. In his role as an operational meteorologist, he works day to day training Fast Jet pilots and engaging in search and rescue activities. 

Cave diver and Operational Meteorologist Josh Bratchley.

2. He rescued a soccer team

In July 2018, Bratchley was part of a twelve member team who was hand chosen to help rescue a Thailand soccer team. The rescue mission lasted a total of 18 days. The team was able to successfully rescue 12 footballers and their coach from deep inside of Tham Luang cave. In his interview with the Met Blog, Bratchley discussed how he became involved in the rescue.  “The Thai government requested assistance from the British Cave Rescue Council. Rick and John, two of the divers requested by name at the very beginning, were the ones who first found the children alive,” he said. “Canadian and European divers who live in Thailand were also called up, and the British team asked for two Australian cave divers who are also medical professionals to join them.”

Bratchley was in the Italian Dolomites when he received the call. He quickly found an international airport and booked a flight to the UK. He was immediately thrust into action after going about 36 hours with no sleep. "I was directly involved in the operation as a cave rescue diver, working in the dive team to get the children out one at a time," Bratchley said. "It was an extremely high-pressure situation which required undisturbed concentration, so unsurprisingly I didn’t have any time to photograph events!"

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3. He received an award for the rescue mission

Bratchley received high praises for his efforts in the rescue mission. According to Heavy News, Bratchley told X Ray Magazine, “It’s incredible to be recognized in such a way and all of us on the team are extremely appreciative of all the support that we’ve received from family, friends, cavers, divers, colleagues and strangers alike.” Bratchley was given the Member of The Order of The British Empire award by the British Cave Rescue Council. He also received recognition from Blue Peter Badges. Although awards can only be given to children ages 6-15, Bratchley was given a Blue Peter cloth emblem to remind him of his achievement in the rescue. 

Bratchley posted the letter he received from Blue Peter Badge on Facebook saying “This came in the post while I was away! As a kid I'd always wanted a Blue Peter Badge, but cus I'm apparently an adult now they sent me an emblem instead! Thank you, anonymous Paul, whoever you are!”

Bratchley was pleased to receive an emblem from Blue Peter Badge.

4. He was declared missing

Bratchley was in Tennessee with a group of divers exploring the Mill Pond Cave when he went missing. According to The Washington Post, the divers used a long rope to help them find their way back out since they would be spending days in the cave. When all of the divers finally made it out, they realized that Bratchley was not among them. The team immediately took another dive and spent hours trying to find him. When they still couldn’t get to him, they finally called for help. Edd Sorenson was the world class diver from Florida who was called to save Bratchley.

Video of the cave that Josh Bratchley was stuck in. 

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5. He was rescued

Sorenson was able to find Bratchley in less than an hour. He found him covered in mud and waiting for help. "I was amazed. I probably could have been to him sooner but I was looking for every nook and cranny for a body, so when I popped out of the surface, I was looking directly at him." Sorenson said.

Sorenson said that Bratchley had managed to find an air pocket thereby saving himself from drowning and hypothermia. "His mental state was impeccable, he's a consummate professional so he did a great job aiding in his rescue and we were out quickly and smoothly," Sorenson said.

Bratchley emerged from the cave with no harm and had only one request.

"His only request: he wanted some pizza," said Derek Woolbright, from Jackson County Emergency Management.

A description of the rescue of the hero cave diver Josh Bratchley.

Alexis George is a writer who covers love, relationship advice, astrology, personality topics and celebrity news.