The Old Man and the Cesspool

Monday, Nov 30, 2009  |  Updated 7:00 AM EDT
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The Old Man and the Cesspool

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He may need some of this...

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A 71-year-old man is lucky to be alive after being rescued from a cesspool on Long Island, according to fire officials.

Edward Matos was walking across his son's front lawn in Deer Park on Sunday when a hole opened beneath his feet.  The next thing he knew he was submerged up to his chest in the filthy sewage.

His daughter, Melissa Pantelis, called 911, then sprawled on the grass and grabbed his hand.

Eddie Matos Jr. rushed to help — and fell partway in himself. But he managed to drag his father out, with help from his sister and a passing friend.

Assistant Fire Chief John Giammarino says the family's quick action averted a tragedy. The fire official says methane gas from the cesspool could have been deadly.

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