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Couple dies after being swept out to sea

The outcropping off Otter Crest Loop (Oregon State Police)
Thursday, September 13, 2018

A couple who’d recently immigrated to the United States from China were killed when they were swept out to sea by a large wave Sunday evening near Depoe Bay.

Their 10-year-old daughter was not caught in the wave and survived.

Miaochan Chen, 49, and Wenjun Zhu, 41, of Lake Oswego were visiting the coast with their daughter and picnicking off Otter Crest Loop when they took a trail down to rocks overlooking the ocean, the Oregon State Police reported.

A wave washed over the rocks and swept the parents into the ocean.

A U.S. Coast Guard helicopter and life boat, along with State Police and Depoe Bay Fire and Rescue began searching after receiving the 5:30 p.m. call. The couple’s bodies were found, unresponsive, an hour later and taken by helicopter to Pacific Communities Hospital in Newport, where they were pronounced dead.

Chen, Zhu, and their daughter had immigrated to the United States from China in July. Family members were notified with the help of the Chinese Consulate. The Department of Human Services in Lincoln County responded and placed their daughter into a local foster home and will be working with the families for her further placement.


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