Toddler killed by alligator near Disney resort honored with statue

Lane Graves, the 2-year-old who was attacked and killed by an alligator near a Disney resort last year, was recently honored with a statue.

The Lane Thomas Foundation, a charitable group started by Graves’ parents to support families in crisis, shared a photo of the statue on Facebook, saying it’s meant to “honor our loving boy.”

“We find comfort that so many people continue to remember our sweet boy, Lane, and we believe the lighthouse stands as a beacon of hope and support for families in the depths of despair," the Graves family said in a statement. "We will continue to honor Lane and preserve his spirit through the Lane Thomas Foundation."

The gold lighthouse with two blue stars stands near the spot where the incident happened, according to Orlando Weekly.

"The lighthouse sculpture has been installed to help spread awareness of the Lane Thomas Foundation, which was established to provide assistance and support to families whose children need organ transplants,'' a Disney spokesperson told TODAY.

Graves was grabbed by the alligator while playing in the water at the Seven Seas Lagoon at Grand Floridian Resort and Spa in Orlando. His father, who quickly rushed to the boy's aid, could not fend off the alligator and received minor injuries to his hand.

The boy's mother also ran into the water, but when the frantic couple was unable to save the boy, they alerted a nearby lifeguard who called 911. His body was later recovered.

Orange County Sheriff Jerry Demings said at the time the horrific ordeal was "not survivable."

© 2017 USA TODAY


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