Little Lane Graves did not die in vain.
The parents of the toddler who was killed by an alligator last summer at a Disney World resort have established a foundation to help families in need of organ transplants. They did not sue Disney.
During a Wednesday press conference in their home state of Nebraska, Matt and Melissa Graves said they created The Lane Thomas Foundation to help pay travel and living expenses for the families of kids being treated in Omaha at Children’s Hospital or Nebraska Medicine.
“Lane had a very special light about him,” said Matt Graves. “We promised him at his wake we would turn this tragedy into good for many families.”
According to the Associated Press, 15 families have already received support.
Matt Graves told authorities his 2 year old son was making sand castles near the water’s edge at Disney’s Grand Floridian Resort about 8:30 p.m. on June 14, 2016, when an alligator dragged the child by the head into the water, the Seven Seas Lagoon. An autopsy showed he died from drowning and traumatic injuries to the head and neck.
A stone wall was since built around the lake and warning signs added. A lighthouse statue honoring the child was also also placed near the site where he was snatched.