The coincidence of having the run up to a tragedy documented in this way adds some mighty weight to the reality of whitewater deaths. The typical write ups we read where voices, emotions, and, most importantly, personalities, are tempered by the simple and effective text narrative with maybe a picture or two allows for much greater detachment. The added documentation along with the drama added (or is it added drama?) by a journalism layer puts this "report" in a category all its own. This, the rescues on OBJ, and the most recent one in England moves, for me, the reality of rescues and deaths away from black and white into a technicolor production that's increasingly difficult to digest.
On the river, I can abandon who I am and what I've done. However brief it lasts, while on the river I am nothing important and everything insignificant. I am flotsam, and happy to be so.