Friday, May 22, 2020: This week, the World Boxing Council will honor three Thai citizens with the WBC Heroes of Humanity award. The award was setup to honor both medical professionals fighting the virus and people who became prominent activists in spreading a voice of social distancing and understanding towards victims of the virus.

In open letter, the WBC thanked all three on their varied stories during the ongoing global pandemic.

The full text is below:

There is no doubt that the world is a different place now than it was just a few months ago. An invisible enemy has engulfed villages, towns, and cities across the globe with no sympathy for man, woman, or child. The strain of CoronaVirus (COVID-19) has taken the lives of hundreds of thousands of people and left families and loved ones heartbroken.

For all the sadness and strained emotions, there are heartwarming accounts of survival and stories of medical professionals who work tirelessly to help those affected by the virus, come back to good health.

One of those narratives with a positive conclusion connects a husband, a wife, and a doctor who has spent his entire career studying infectious diseases. This story takes us to the Southeast Asian city of Bangkok where TV personality, Matthew Deane and his pop star wife, Lydia Sarunrat Deane, were both struck down with the CoronaVirus — back in early March.

The doctor, Mr. Wichai Techasathit, and his team at Bangkok’s Bumrungrad hospital worked day and night to tend to every delicate step and procedure to make sure that all incoming victims of the CoronaVirus were treated with the highest level of professionalism that the medical teams were capable of providing, with patients from China, England, France, and Japan all receiving treatment at Bumrungrad.

Dr. Wichai is no stranger to infectious diseases. He had spent time on the front lines when SARS and MERS came to knock on the doors of nations. Dr. Wichai also has — in the past — consulted and devised strategies to help the World Health Organization develop antiretroviral treatments.

Mathew and Lydia were blessed to have such knowledge in their corner, as they fought their way back to good health. They had two beautiful reasons to do so, as their two young children were longing to see their mom and dad, after almost one month apart.

COVID-19 first became publicly recognizable in Thailand, in early February. The numbers of those infected with the disease stand at 3,033, with 56 deaths recorded, as of May 19, in the Kingdom. Those numbers are considerably low given what has taken place in so many other countries.

Thanks to the expert precautionary advice given to the Thai Government, by Dr. Wichai and others, and the welcomed cooperation by those living in the Kingdom, the invisible enemy has not KO’d a country or its people.

The World Boxing Council is proud to recognize the survivors, such as Mathew and Lydia, who used their large social media following to educate people of the necessity of good hygiene and to emphasize the importance of not stigmatizing those affected by the virus. To the medical teams, and to all those who continue to play a role in combating this disease, the WBC salutes you as Heroes of Humanity.

To those who have passed away, may they forever Rest In Peace. To the loved ones left behind, our thoughts and prayers go out to you.


WBC Family.

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