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Published: Wednesday, 12/6/2006

Trio disobeying mom's rules help man injured in Maumee

From left, Jessica Scarbrough, 9, Marcus Dye-Scarbrough, 14, Zack Scarbrough, 10, and Jake Purcell, 11, talk about where they found the injured man. From left, Jessica Scarbrough, 9, Marcus Dye-Scarbrough, 14, Zack Scarbrough, 10, and Jake Purcell, 11, talk about where they found the injured man.

Jessica Scarbrough, 9, knew she was not supposed to walk into the ravine.

The Maumee girl also remembered she was never to talk to strangers.

Jessica, her two brothers, and a friend broke both of those rules the Saturday after Thanksgiving, but none of them got into trouble.

Instead, they became heroes.

Jill Scarbrough, Jessica's mother, said her daughter, sons Marcus Dye-Scarbrough,14; Zackary Scarbrough,10; and their friend, 11-year-old Jake Purcell, were all walking to an empty field on Wildwood Boulevard near Mapleway Drive in South Toledo to play football.

Mrs. Scarbrough said on the way to the field, the three younger children stopped and walked down into a nearby ravine, where they heard a loud noise and witnessed a man flip his all-terrain vehicle while trying to ride it up the bank.

Jessica, Zackary, and Jake ran to check on Toledoan Dan Kester, 34, who was at the base of the ravine with facial injuries and unable to speak.

The three hurried to get help, while Marcus stayed with Mr. Kester.

The children found a stranger who was working in his yard and told him what happened.

Authorities said a 911 call was placed around 4:10 p.m., and Mr. Kester was rescued and taken to University Medical Center.

When a local television station wanted to interview Jessica about the ordeal, the girl told her mother she didn't want to be on camera because she had done a bad thing.

"She said she thought she was in trouble because she wasn't supposed to be down in the ravine," Mrs. Scarbrough said. "I guess they were in the right place at the right time. I told all of them I was very proud for what they did."

Mr. Kester was awake and standing when an emergency medical squad found him, but he again lost consciousness, authorities said.

A hospital spokesman declined to release any details about Mr. Kester's condition last week and would not say whether he had been discharged.

Jessica told The Blade last week that she had yet to speak to Mr. Kester since the incident. She was still uneasy about what she did because she disobeyed her mother's rules, but she knew she had done the right thing by running for help.

Mrs. Scarbrough was obviously thrilled her children and their friend were able to help a man who was seriously injured, but she still does not want them to break her rules.

"They can walk along the ravine, but can't go down in it," she said.

"The only reason they're not in trouble is because they helped that man."

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