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The Nation

October 15, 1987

An 18-month-old girl tumbled down an 8-inch-wide pipe and became trapped in a dry water well in Midland, Tex., setting off a frantic rescue effort that lasted through the day and into the night. Rescue workers using sensing equipment reported they could hear the child sobbing in the dark about 20 feet below the ground. Authorities said Jessica McClure somehow slipped into the 8-inch well pipe and landed in an area where the pipe widens into a bell-shaped cavern about 6 feet wide when her mother, Reba Gayle McClure, went into the house to answer the telephone. Officials said the sensing equipment showed the girl apparently was notseriously hurt.

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