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FORT BENTON — A north-central Montana man rescued a tired fawn from a bed of drying sewer sludge while others helped reunite the baby deer with its mother nearby.

Joe Bauer says Wednesday's rescue was a rewarding experience, but nobody wanted to be around him until he showered and changed his clothes.

Fort Benton city crew members were working on the sewage lagoon when someone told works superintendent Skip Ross a fawn was stuck in the black sludge.

Ross tells the Great Falls Tribune he tasked Bauer, 19, with the rescue. Bauer slogged more than 100 yards through the thigh-deep sludge to reach the distressed fawn. He carried it to the bank of the nearby Missouri River.

After the fawn regained its strength, Ross said others guided it back to its mother, avoiding the short-cut across the sludge.

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