Disney gator attack victim’s family to help kids awaiting organ transplants

Credit: Orange County Sheriff's Office

OMAHA, Neb. (WESH) —The parents of a 2-year-old boy who was killed by an alligator at a Walt Disney World resort last year announced Tuesday that their son’s legacy will be carried on through collaborations with two Nebraska hospitals.

In June 2016, an alligator grabbed 2-year-old Lane Graves, who was playing along the Seven Seas Lagoon beach outside Disney’s Grand Floridian Resort and Spa.

Lane’s parents, Matt and Melissa Graves, launched the Lane Thomas Foundation in honor of their son.

The organization will work with Children’s Hospital and Medical Center and Nebraska Medicine to help cover transportation, lodging, and other nonmedical expenses incurred by families who have children awaiting transplants.

“Melissa and I created the Foundation in honor of our beautiful boy, Lane, in order to do something positive for other families,” said Matt Graves. “We have been overwhelmed by the support and love we have been shown from across the country. We believe we have found an impactful way for us to help others in similar circumstances and ease some of their burdens so these parents can focus on their child.”

The Graves family will formally announce the collaboration during a news conference on Wednesday.

Disney installed a lighthouse sculpture in August honoring Lane.

In the year since Lane’s death, Disney has made numerous changes to increase safety for its guests. It added signs warning guests of reptiles in its waterways. It also constructed a boulder wall along the edge of the lagoon.

WFLA.com provides commenting to allow for constructive discussion on the stories we cover. In order to comment here, you acknowledge you have read and agreed to our Terms of Service. Commenters who violate these terms, including use of vulgar language or racial slurs, will be banned. Please be respectful of the opinions of others and keep the conversation on topic and civil. If you see an inappropriate comment, please flag it for our moderators to review.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s