Hometown Heroes - Dev Doc Theatre

Published: Jul. 27, 2023 at 3:42 AM CDT
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LAKE CHARLES, La. (KPLC) - A retired McNeese State University professor has a new project that preserves history and celebrates our Hometown Heroes.

“The most fulfilling things I ever did in theatre were Devised Documentary theatre productions, where a group of people got together without a script and created a theatrical production about hurricanes, teenagers, autism and Asperger’s, all kinds of things that I felt that needed to be understood,” said Charles McNeely.

That’s how McNeely came up with his newest project, Dev Doc Theatre. With the help of volunteers, McNeely is interviewing people who have stories to tell from which others may learn.

“I love the idea of having someone talk about what they have experienced so their descendants and generations to come will know this is how it was. I think it’s important to hear from people who have “lived it.” By it, I mean anything they have gone through.”

Amber and Julian Quebodeaux experienced the loss of their first child.

“It is like the hardest thing to say or talk about - our baby is dead,” said Julian. It’s a really awful thing to have to say. But we would benefit quite a bit if more people were able to talk about it.”

Terrel Deville is a survivor of Hurricane Audrey.

“While I was waiting to be rescued, I thought that I would not be rescued,” said Deville. “I saw the seaplane come up to a point where I thought it had seen me, it would have come and picked me up. But no, it flew away.”

McNeely says Dev Doc Theatre is about preserving history while at the same time celebrating people who have overcome great challenges.

“I see every one of these people as heroes, as people who have overcome things that I could never dream of overcoming,” said McNeely.

Dev Doc Theatre stories can be found on YouTube and their website.