By Fran Maye
If cats really do have nine lives, Pumpkin’s got eight left.
Pumpkin, a cat owned by Jackie Skean who lives on Chalfont Road in East Marlborough Township, somehow managed to crawl through a small window opening in an upper floor room of the house last Sunday morning. With the roof’s steep pitch, the feline had nowhere to go but to the crest of the roof.
Once there, the 3-year-old American shorthair was afraid to move.
Skean later heard the calls of her cat and realized he was stuck on the roof. She went outside, looked up and saw the cat.
She immediately called her nearby friend, Brynne Ashton, who has experience in these kinds of things. She has had to rescue her cat from trees on a number of occasions.
“I rushed over to see if there was anything I could do to help,” she said. “When I arrived, I realized why she was so distraught. The cat was 40 feet on a steep cedar shake roof crying for help.”
Ashton and Skean began calling roofing companies. But because it was Sunday, most businesses were closed so Ashton decided to call her friend, Tiffany Lahn. Lahn gave her the number of John Sarro, who owns a sign company at the intersection of Routes 926 and 82 in Unionville. She figured he would have access to a cherry picker because of his business.
Sarro was on the scene within 10 minutes with his bucket truck.
“I had my cell phone with me and this lady calls me in a panic,” Sarro said. “So I went over with my bucket truck.”
Sarry brought a can of tuna with him, and raised himself up 45 feet off the ground to get close to the cat. He had a pet carrier with him, but didn’t need it. As soon as Pumpkin got a whiff of the tuna, he got close, and Sarro quickly scruffed him by the neck and gently put him in the bucket.
“It was a perfect day to save a cat,” said Sarro, who is running in this May’s primary election for a seat on East Marlborough board of supervisors. “I’ve been in this business for 20 years, and we joke that we never get to save a cat. Well, I finally got to do it.”
Ironically, Sarro rescued the cat on the same day of his wife’s 50th birthday. He said she didn’t mind him doing a good deed for the occasion.
“I think residents would appreciate a politician who puts the needs of others before his own,” said Ashton.
“He (Sarro) was our hero for the afternoon,” Ashton said.
It wasn’t the first time Pumpkin escaped from the window onto the roof. But Pumpkin was rescued by the local fire company because Skean’s husband was a volunteer firefighter. But since he no longer volunteers, that option was out.
Now the Skean’s plan to keep their windows closed enough so Pumpkin can’t fit through.