Roto-Rooter's Top Five 2005 Drainpipe Recoveries
1. While excavating a residential sewer main in Vicksburg, Miss., a Roto-Rooter crew dug up a live Civil War cannon shell believed to be leftover from the 1863 siege of Vicksburg. An Army Ordnance disposal team was called to remove it.
2. Bruce Shockley and his crew rescued a cat, Angel, from a Greensboro, N.C., storm sewer. The cat had jumped from her elderly owner's arms into the sewer, became disoriented and couldn't get out. Angel spent 24 hours underground before the crew excavated through earth and concrete to rescue her.
3. In Bloomington, Ill., a 3-year-old boy sent one of this GI Joe's down the toilet for “deep water rescue techniques.” When it didn't come up, he sent a few more after it. When those went AWOL, he flushed some Matchbox cars to find them. Roto-Rooter's Michael Woggon retrieved 15 toys from the drainpipe.
4. Police in Hamilton, Ontario, called Roto-Rooter to recover a large stash of drugs and cash that a suspect flushed down the toilet just as the cops came in the front door. Plumber John Dekker took only minutes to recover the evidence.
5. A Sacramento, Calif., business had a backed-up sewer main. Toilets and sinks were overflowing, so Roto-Rooter plumbers Brek Ritzema and Scott Chapman went to work on the clog. Their equipment began pulling out empty miniature liquor bottles; an employee was in the habit of drinking on the job and flushing the evidence.