Lane Graves' Parents Release New Statement on Death in Disney Alligator Attack

Andrew Cummings
June 19, 2016

He said previous signs that only warned Grand Floridian guests not to go swimming in the lake intentionally left out any mention of alligators so as not to frighten guests.

Disney has been criticized since the attack for not having signage warning of alligators despite a well-known presence of the deadly animals.

It was too late.

As the toddler stood in about a foot of water, an alligator grabbed him and dragged him underwater.

On Saturday, Lane's parents, Matt and Melissa Graves, released a statement saying they weren't ready to speak publicly about their son's death.

After an Orlando medical examiner conducted an autopsy, it was determined the toddler died from drowning and traumatic injuries after being snatched by the alligator.

"Melissa and I continue to handle the loss of our cherished child, Lane, and are overwhelmed with the assistance and love we have actually gotten from friends and family in our community along with from around the nation", father Matt Graves said in the statement provided by their church in Elkhorn, Nebraska.

Disney closed off the beaches at its resort in response to the attack.

The Graves also asked for privacy as they lay their son to rest.

Abbott is one of the few attorneys to ever win a lawsuit in Florida involving an alligator attack.

Disney officials say they're evaluating their procedures for reporting sightings and interactions with wildlife, and how their staff communicates warnings to guests.

David Hiden described rescuing his son as not one, but two alligators closed in on him at their Disney resort past year.

"They put the hotels right on the edge of the lake and they mixed people with the water, which they know they alligators are in, so at a minimum they had a duty to warn", he said. "Nearly one-third of Walt Disney World property is set aside as a conservation area and these areas attract a variety of native wildlife".

Disney said Thursday it will now add gator warnings, but has not said when.

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