russ and diane storyline
We came across several sources that detailed the tragic story of a couple from Tacoma, Washington, who lost four children on a beach in Oregon due to the tsunami caused by the earthquake in Alaska. Not only did their children die that night, but they had lost another daughter the year before in a campfire accident, thus compounding the tragedy.
We began to talk about how hard it would be to come back from such significant losses; indeed, we discovered that despite several attempts to move on together, the couple eventually divorced. We did not find further record of the husband, but the wife eventually change her name and relocated, putting her past behind her. Only after her death did her neighbors discover the connection, and they ensured that she was buried alongside her children.
Our dramatization began with the father character, who we called Russ (Taran Haynes), visiting a priest in guilt over the loss of his daughter in the campfire accident. Subsequently, we saw the family make the decision to vacation to Oregon, to camp the night on the beach, and using a huge blue piece of fabric, we re-staged the tsunami and the loss of the children. Russ and his wife, Diane (Petra Murray), show in a physical theatre scene their attempts to reconcile. Eventually, they divorce.