Together with Wayne, they lived in the suburbs of Hope, Canada with their young daughter Lydia. The game starts out with Randall searching for his family in Seattle.
Sometime after the outbreak, Randall returns home to find his house under siege by zombies (called shadows). Shannon and Lydia are hiding in the bedroom. Upon entering the bedroom, Shannon begs Randall to kill her and Lydia for fear of becoming "shadows." Randall, only having two shotgun shells, reluctantly kills his wife and daughter and then somehow escapes. Randall represses the haunting memory until he is put into a similar situation with Stella while escaping the New Law.