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New details about how an alligator killed a toddler at a Disney resort


The father of a 2-year-old killed by an alligator at a Disney resort near Orlando reached into the gator's mouth in a futile attempt to save his child. Lane Graves was killed by a crushing bite and drowning, the final report from the Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission said.

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“Melissa and I are broken,” Matt Graves wrote. “We will forever struggle to comprehend why this happened to our sweet baby, Lane.

“As each day passes, the pain gets worse, but we truly appreciate the outpouring of sympathy and warm sentiments we have received from around the world.”

“We will solely be focused on the future health of our family and will not be pursuing a lawsuit against Disney,” the statement said.

The statement also said Graves’ parents, Matt and Melissa Graves, were establishing the Lane Thomas Foundation in their son’s honor.

“We know we can never have Lane back, and therefore, we intend to keep his spirit alive through (the foundation),” it said. “It is our hope that through the foundation we will be able to share with others the unimaginable love Lane etched in our hearts.”

The family asked for privacy, “as we focus on our family.”


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About the Author

Jennifer Brett is a multiplatform journalist and digital coach. She writes The Buzz blog for accessAtlanta.com.