Disney Honors Toddler Killed by an Alligator with a Statue

  • Disney Honors Toddler Killed by an Alligator with a Statue

Disney Honors Toddler Killed by an Alligator with a Statue

Disney World has unveiled a lighthouse sculpture honoring a 2-year-old boy who was killed by an alligator while playing near a lagoon on its property last year.

Now, nearly 14 months after the tragedy on June 14, 2016, the theme park is unveiling a statue to honor both Lane and the organization started in his name. A small plaque at the base of the sculpture reads: "Presented to the Lane Thomas Foundation". A beacon of hope. His father, Matt Graves, tried unsuccessfully to pry Lane from the alligator's grip.

The Graves family said that the statue will stand as a beacon of hope and support for families in despair. It took police more than 16 hours of searching to find the child and when they did find Lane's body, his death was ultimately ruled accidental.

He and his family were on vacation and he was scooping sand on the beach area when the alligator appeared out of Seven Seas Lagoon and snatched him.

"In recognition of National Lighthouse Day, please see the lighthouse created to honor our loving boy Lane", the Lane Thomas Foundation posted to their Facebook page on Monday. The park also constructed a boulder wall along the edge of the lagoon.

The organization was founded in honor of the two-year-old to "provide assistance and support for families whose children need organ transplants".