The community is invited to two screenings of "Taylor White: Aftermath" this week.
The documentary describes the events surrounding the night last year when Juneau teen Taylor White, who had just graduated from high school, died as a passenger in a drunk driving accident. The story is told through candid interviews with Taylor's friends who witnessed and were involved in the tragedy.
The film was produced by the Taylor White Foundation for Advancing our Community, set up by Taylor's parents, Carol and Kevin White. The foundation's goal is to work toward a community environment supportive of Juneau youth in making healthy decisions in high-risk situations.
The film was put together by Juneau video producing and graphic design company Lucid Reverie.
Kevin White talked to the kids himself after taking part in a professional interviewing workshop. He said it was difficult for him to conduct the interviews, but that the project was important and needed to be done.
Taylor's friends were also supportive of the ultimate goal, Kevin said, which was "kids telling the truth."
"I was pretty proud of them," Kevin said. "They just sucked it and did it."
White said they had recorded several hours of interview with local youth, asking how many kids in their schools were involved in reckless partying. He said that the estimates were 85 to 90 percent.
After showing some of the film to area schools in the spring, Kevin said there was a marked drop in alcohol-related incidents.
"We got some good feedback from the kids," he said.
Aaron Suring and Patrick Race of Lucid Reverie said they were surprised with the results during the filming.
"The kids were really open," Suring said, "which was really impressive, just how free they were with what happened."
Race said that while the film's focus is on Taylor White, it has a larger message for the entire community.
"Our community is almost overprotective because we put in place such strict guidelines, but then it's almost like we don't want to hear about it," he said. "In some cases we close our eyes to problems."
Kevin described the filmmakers at Lucid Reverie as "astonishingly good."
"They're the best," he said. "Very talented people, very caring and compassionate."
Kevin said he and others of the cast and crew will be at the screenings for questions and discussion. The goal is to create an open dialogue with the community.
"It's kind of hard truths," he said, "but maybe it's good to get those truths out there."
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