It was Anderson who called the Menlo Park Fire Protection District after hearing Ryle's cries from the pipe for several hours.
Firefighters called animal control authorities, but returned to the scene after those officers were unable to rescue the kitten.
The fire department used a cell phone camera to take video inside the drain pipe to spot Ryle, but struggled at first to bring him up. They were about to give up when probationary firefighter Ryle Fitzgerald caught the kitten around his neck and a leg using twine tied in a loop, and pulled him up.
Anderson named the kitten after Fitzgerald, who was dubbed "the cat whisperer" by his colleagues.
The next morning, Anderson saw the mother cat carrying another kitten by the scruff of its neck across her property, and when she followed it, she found two other kittens. She bottle-fed them until she was able to catch the mother in a trap and reunite her with the kittens.
"I used Ryle as bait in one trap and caught the mother in a second trap," Anderson said.
She later took the feline family to a friend, who transported them to the Humane Society of Silicon Valley in Milpitas, where they are in foster care.
"Ryle is doing great," Anderson said. "I can see how he got caught in the pipe. He is very curious, very sturdy, very vocal."
— By Rick Radin
This story contains 304 words.
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