For Australian mother-of-two Jillian Searle, who let go of her older son Lachie, 5, in a life-or-death decision as the wall of water struck, there was a happy ending.
Lachie was found alive about two hours later clinging to a door and, though traumatized by his ordeal, looked uninjured as his mother spoke to reporters on arrival back in Australia.
"I knew I had to let go of one of them and I just thought I’d better let go of the one that’s the oldest," said Searle, who had then held on to two-year-old Blake in the Thai resort island of Phuket.
"And I was screaming, trying to find him, and we thought he was dead."
I wonder how many similar incidents, among survivors and the now 125,000 dead (can you comprehend the magnitude of that?), did not turn out so well.