Ten years before Jonas was selected to be the community's next Receiver of Memory, the previous Reciever-in-training requested release. Once she was released, her painful memories escaped into the community, causing chaos and discomfort. It took the Giver a considerable amount of time to collect the traumatic memories and restore order to the community. The Giver explains to Jonas that the previous Receiver of Memory was named Rosemary. Rosemary was the Giver's daughter, and he could not bring himself to transfer physically painful memories to her during their training sessions. After five weeks of training, the Giver began transferring memories of loss and loneliness to his daughter.
Sadly, the depressing memories influenced Rosemary to request release. The Committee of Elders allowed Rosemary to apply for release and she proceeded to commit suicide. Once Rosemary died, her traumatic, depressing memories spread throughout the community. The citizens could not cope with the difficult, painful memories and chaos ensued. Eventually, the memories were harnessed and the committee learned a valuable lesson. Following the terrible incident, the Committee of Elders changed the Receiver's rules to prohibit release. Overall, the committee failed in their selection ten years before Jonas was chosen to be the next Receiver of Memory, and chaos ensued when the previous Receiver's memories were released into the community.