ORLANDO (FOX 13) - It was a year ago Wednesday that a little boy was killed by an alligator in Walt Disney World.
The family started the Lane Thomas Foundation so their son’s name would live on.
Walt Disney World President, George A. Kalogridis stated, “The Lane Thomas Foundation was created to give honor and light to Lane's life. The foundation is dedicated to supporting families of children needing life-saving organ transplants. To provide continued awareness of the foundation and its mission, we've commissioned an original sculpture of the lighthouse the foundation uses as a symbol of love and hope, to be installed on our property this summer.”
According to the charity’s website, they want the charity to serve as a “beacon of hope” for families in crisis.
Lane was playing on the beach area of Disney’s Grand Floridian Resort and Spa when an alligator suddenly appeared out of Seven Seas Lagoon. It grabbed the boy and pulled him in. His father jumped into the water and tried to fight the gator but could not.
About 16 hours later, deputies found Lane’s body. His death was ruled an accident. The alligator was later caught.
In the weeks and months after Walt Disney has made changes. It added signs warning guests of reptiles in its waterways. They've also added a boulder wall along the edge of the lagoon.