by: Dave Faherty Updated:CATAWBA COUNTY, N.C. —
A team of volunteer firefighters and rescue members from the town of Catawba went to work after getting a call and spotting a black cat in a dark hole.
Channel 9 watched as Derrick Houston with Catawba Rescue Squad and others got their gear ready to make the nearly 60-foot plunge.
Cellphone video shows the rescue up close, as Houston slowly lowers himself down the hole. Minutes later, a bag with the cat, nicknamed Blackie, appears from the old dry well.
The pet was shaken by the ordeal. He didn’t appear to be hurt, but he took off after being released.
"I really appreciate them coming out and doing that for me. I don't know how we would have gotten the cat out and I just really appreciate it,” said owner Callie Engberg.
Volunteers and others then hoisted Derrick Houston out of the hole. The whole rescue took only about 15 minutes, but it is something he and others said they can learn from for future rescues involving people.
"Animal, a person, we go down and get them. It is good training for a human life in danger,” Houston said.
The owner said she plans on covering the small hole the cat fell through to keep it from ever happening again.