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May 16,2008
Boy claws girl out from under rubble
by UPI

BEIJING -- Xiang Xiaoling, 13, survived the earthquake in China's Sichaun province, thanks to her classmate Ma Jian, who used his hands to claw her out of the rubble.

Hearing the pleas of Xiang as she lay buried in the rubble of her school building, Ma Jian said he couldn't leave her there because "you are the youngest in our class," Xinhua reported.

"The boy clawed me out with his bare hands," Xiang said from her hospital bed in Wenchuan, the epicenter of Monday's earthquake

Xiang was in her chemistry class at the boarding school when the quake struck. She was pinned under a cement slab.

"I missed my parents," she told Xinhua, adding, "I had to see them again before I died."

A while after she passed out, she said she was awakened by Ma's shouts.

"Don't leave me, Ma Jian, at least, not until after I die," she said she replied.

"I will not, you are the youngest in our class," Ma said, as he began digging while also chatting with Xiang to keep her from passing out.

It took Ma about four hours of digging before he could free Xiang, Xinhua said.

Although his hands were badly bruised, Ma carried her on his back out through the school gate.

The report didn't say if Ma had any comments about his ordeal.

Copyright © 2008, by United Press International. All Rights Reserved.

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