MISSOULA, Mont. -

As parents brought their kids to Hellgate Elementary School Monday morning, teachers noticed something unusual.

A duck stood on Siren Lane in the middle of passing cars. Teachers tried to shoo it away before they spotted 10 ducklings inside a nearby storm drain.

The ducklings had fallen through the grates as they followed their mother.

School maintenance staff, including Jim McKee, had the tools to help. They took off the heavy grates and lowered a bucket with a rope to catch the ducklings.

They were able to pull out four from each drain on either side of the road. Two remained out of reach in a pipe connecting those two drains.

McKee and coworker Jim Hyde lowered a ladder into the drain and McKee went into the depths.

After some difficult maneuvering the muddy ducklings were finally rescued. After being taken out of the drain, they were set free.

In a field across from campus, their mother waited for her brood. In this case, a bad situation had a happy ending.