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Dive Team Pulls Cow Out of Icy Pond

January 11, 1996

SHICKSHINNY, Pa. (AP) _ It was a cow slip.

The 900-pound bovine wandered to the center of her owner’s icy pond. Problem is, she didn’t moo-ve fast enough and fell in.

A neighbor, Paul Zagata, spotted her head and shoulders bobbing in the water about 100 feet from shore Tuesday. The cow’s back legs were stuck in mud.

Zagata, his brother Andy and farm owner Art Hildeberandt attached a harness to the Brown Swiss cow, but she stopped moving whenever they tried to pull her from the 5-foot hole.

Plan B: Send for the Luzerne County Dive Team.

Ten men in wet suits arrived. They called in the fire department. The team fastened a rope to the harness and attached it to a winch on the front of the fire truck.

``Many other cows watched in fear and hope,″ said Scott Trethaway, the team’s commander.

The truck immediately pulled the shivering cow up and onto the ice. She later recovered inside a barn. Trethaway estimated she was in the pond for two hours.

``This was the first farm animal I’ve had the pleasure of helping out,″ he said.

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