While the outcome of the Wild Boars soccer team’s extrication from Tham Luang cave back in 2018 was a celebration for the entire world, there was a service family grieving at the same time. The Gunans were undeniably glad the 12 junior athletes and their assistant coach were okay, but they’d already lost retired Royal Thai Navy SEAL Saman “Sam” Gunan during the operation. After all, as indicated in Netflix’s ‘Thai Cave Rescue,’ the former official had volunteered to assist, which ended up affecting his life partner the most — so let’s find out more about her, shall we?
Who is Saman Gunan’s Wife?
It was Valepon “Meow” Gunan (or Valeepoan, or Waleeporn) that stood by Sam through every thick and thin for years, whether it be in the midst of his active service or upon his retirement. However, despite her awareness of the dangers surrounding his (former) profession, she still could’ve never been prepared to lose her love because it’s simply not something you even think of. July 6, 2018, was thus seemingly one of the most trying days of her life — it’s the day she became a widow and yielded her partner. Sam had died of asphyxiation during an oxygen delivery dive.
“In other people’s eyes, he’s lovely,” Valepon told BBC News back in 2018 itself. “For me, I love him so much. I really loved him. Every day before he left for work, we said we loved each other. At midday, we’d text to see if the other had had lunch. In the evening, when he got home, I would ask him how he was.” She then candidly continued, “Saman once said we never knew when we would die. We can’t control that, so we need to cherish every day.”
Where is Saman Gunan’s Wife Now?
Mere days after Valepon’s whole world had turned upside down, she admitted, “If you ask me if I am sad, it’s like I’ve died but I’m still alive. But I use my pride to repress my sadness. [My husband was] praised as a hero because of who he was, doing charity work and getting things done. So I use pride to help deal with my sorrow.” Then, when asked what she would say to Saman if she could, she expressed, “I want to tell you honey, you are the hero in my heart. You always were and always will be.”
We should mention that Valepon also paid tribute to her late husband on her (now-defunct) Instagram account in the days following his sudden, tragic demise to process her grief. On June 7, she reportedly penned, “You will always be with me… there’s no one like you… if you’re not with me, I don’t want to go on breathing… because we promised each other we would use the same breath.”
A few days later, Valepon shared a black and white photograph of them together, alongside which she wrote: “I miss you. I love you so much; I love you like you’re my very heart, I don’t know why I love you so much…from now on when I wake up… who will I kiss?” However, it appears as if the then Airports of Thailand employee has since retreated from the limelight in a possible attempt to move on from the pain of the past for good. Though, she continues to reside in her homeland to this day, where she keeps the memories of her loving husband alive in her heart.
“When I saw these [rescued] boys, I was proud,” Valepon, who was attending the University of Rangsit on the weekends for an innovation-entrepreneurship course in 2019, recently said in ‘The Trapped 13: How We Survived the Thai Cave.’ “What my husband did was a success. I never blame [the boys] because I understand no one wanted it to happen. What I wish for them now is to live a normal life and follow their dreams like every other kid. I just want them to continue chasing their dreams.”