Federal Way plays role in Investigation Discovery Channel's ‘Disappeared’ episode about Tanya Rider

Faith Middleton, a student at University of Washington, hangs up clothes at the Cheap Boutique in Federal Way as Jeremy Leach and Hugo Soskin film the action for NBC
Faith Middleton, a student at University of Washington, hangs up clothes at the Cheap Boutique in Federal Way as Jeremy Leach and Hugo Soskin film the action for NBC's Peacock Productions. Cheap Boutique and neighboring Sally Beauty Supply were both used as settings for an upcoming Investigation Discovery Channel program called “Disappeared,” which focuses on Maple Valley couple Tom and Tanya Rider. In 2007, Tanya Rider spent eight days trapped in her car after crashing into a ravine in Renton. The actress pictured above portrays Tanya Rider in the program’s re-enactment scenes. The program will air in December of January, producers said.
— image credit: Andy Hobbs/The Mirror

For a few hours, Federal Way became an unlikely stage for cable television.

Last week, an NBC TV crew from New York interviewed Maple Valley residents Tom and Tanya Rider for an episode of "Disappeared" on the Investigation Discovery Channel. In 2007, Tanya Rider was stranded in her car for eight days after crashing into a ravine off Highway 169 in Renton. According to a Seattle Times report, Rider's car was buried below heavy brush and blackberry bushes about 20 feet off the roadway. She was last seen leaving her job at Fred Meyer in Bellevue. Detectives traced her cellphone by linking it to a phone tower within 5 miles of the crash site; rescuers had to slice the roof off Rider's car to get her out, the report said.

The program's producers arranged to film scenes from the ordeal at locations in King County, including downtown Seattle, a model house in Auburn, the sheriff station in Maple Valley and two stores in Federal Way: Cheap Boutique and Sally Beauty Supply.

On June 4, Cheap Boutique co-owner Marilyn Carlson served coffee and doughnuts to the three-person TV crew as well as two local actors hired for the episode's re-enactment scenes. The clothing store was chosen at random by producers, via a Google search, as a fictitious setting for Tanya Rider's place of employment.

"They called and we said, ‘Of course we'll do it,’" said Carlson, who owns the store with daughter Lisa Shaw.

The episode is slated to air in late 2010 or January 2011, according to producers at the scene. The episode will also explore Tom Rider's struggle to find his wife while she was missing.

"We picked Federal Way because we're staying in Auburn," said producer Hugo Soskin of filming at the local stores. "We're using this area to tell the story."

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