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Wichita Eagle, The (KS)
October 17, 1994

Edition: CITY
Section: MAIN NEWS
Page: 14A

Author: Associated Press
Article Text:OKLEE, Minn. Ambulance driver Jim Dessellier was waiting to join a homecoming parade when he saw a girl in his side mirror slip and fall under the wheels of a float. Nearby, watching the festivities with his family, was an emergency medical technician. So, too, was the sheriff. The three reacted quickly but were unable to save the life of 12-year-old Adeline Chervestad, who jumped from the float to grab candy from the ground.

The girl's death Friday was the second tragedy in a week to strike the tiny northwestern Minnesota communities of Oklee and Plummer, where student athletes compete together as the Red Lake County Central Mustangs. Joseph Lallier, 19, and Seth Culkins, 15, both of Plummer, died Oct. 10 after their dirt bikes collided head-on.

Culkins had been headed to a pre- homecoming bonfire and a dance. Red Lake County Sheriff Allan Morken said the accident that killed Adeline is under investigation. Sheer coincidence placed Jim Dessellier, the ambulance driver, so close to the float Adeline's was riding with her seventh-grade classmates.

He was preparing to take his position in the parade route when he saw Adeline in the path of the float's wheels as the driver slowly began making a turn. ''I said to myself she better move or get out of there or she could get run over, and that's just what happened," Dessellier said. Adeline's classmates yelled at the float driver to stop after they saw her fall under a wheel, Dessellier said.
Copyright (c) 1994 The Wichita Eagle
Record Number: 9402090142

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