20 relatives of men who died in HTMS Sukhothai sinking to join Navy
Twenty family members of sailors who died after the HTMS Sukhothai sank in December have applied to join the Royal Thai Navy (RTN).
Seven heirs and 13 relatives have expressed an interest in joining the service, said RTN assistant commander-in-chief Admiral Suwin Chaengyodsuk on Monday.
Under Defence Ministry rules, families of those killed in the line of duty are given the right to join the armed services. Three families bereaved by the Sukhothai’s sinking waived their right. However, the positions will still be available should they change their mind in the future, Suwin said.
One of the bereaved families nominated a proxy after no heir or relative expressed an interest in joining up. The proxy can join the Navy after a court approves, Suwin added.
The corvette-class Sukhothai sank some 20 nautical miles (32 kilometres) off the coast of Prachuap Khiri Khan’s Bang Saphan district on December 18 in stormy weather with 105 crew onboard.
Seventy-six crewmen were rescued and brought safely to shore.
Twenty-four sailors from the ship were found dead while five remain missing.
The Navy said it is continuing to search the coastline of Prachuap Khiri Khan and Chumphon provinces for traces of the missing crewmen. However, no bodies have been found since December 29.