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Teen Who Fell From Amusement Park Ride Feared For Safety, Father Says

Teen Who Fell From Amusement Park Ride Feared For Safety, Father Says

Missouri teenager Tyre Sampson tragically fell to his death while riding the world’s tallest free-standing drop tower ride in ICON Park

The father of a teenager who died in a tragic theme park accident in Florida this week claims that his son knew there was something wrong with his ride’s safety.

Tyre Sampson's dad says his son believed there was something wrong with his harness and begged his friends to tell his family that he loved them moments before the ride started.

14-year-old Sampson, from Missouri, died on Thursday, 24 March, while on holiday with friends after falling from the 430-foot Orlando Free Fall ride at the ICON Park – billed as the world’s tallest free-standing drop tower ride.

Fox 35 Orlando

The shocking death was captured on video by various people who were both on the ride and on the ground, with several of them posting it on social media.

Orange County sheriff John Mina condemned the 'terrible tragedy' that had taken place, and revealed that the boy was rushed to hospital immediately after the fall, where he was pronounced dead from his injuries.

In an interview with WOFL-TV, the grieving father said: “When the ride took off, that’s when he was feeling uncomfortable. He was like, ‘What’s going on?’''

Sampson said Tyre began to panic upon noticing his harness.

"That’s when he started freaking out, and he was explaining to his friend next to him, ‘I don’t know man. If I don’t make it down, please tell my Mom and Daddy I love them.’ For him to say something like that, he must have felt something." 

Icon Park.

It's currently unclear what the minimum height restriction for the ride is or how he could have fallen from the ride. 

Tyre's family paid tribute to him on social media as a 'gentle giant' who dreamed of playing for the NFL. 

His step-mother Wendy said: "Tyre was a respectful gentle giant. You will be truly missed, son.”

Speaking at a press conference, Orange County Sheriff John Mina said: “Based on all of our preliminary investigation information, it appears to be a terrible tragedy, but our investigation is still open."

In a statement, ICON Park said: "Tonight, the ICON Park family is grieving because of the tragedy involving Tyre Sampson. Our heartfelt thoughts are with his family and friends. 

"We are in close coordination and will continue to cooperate with law enforcement and regulators regarding our tenant, the SlingShot Group."

UNILAD has reached out to ICON Park for further comment.

If you have experienced a bereavement and would like to speak with someone in confidence contact Cruse Bereavement Care via their national helpline on 0808 808 1677 

Featured Image Credit: Fox 35 Orlando

Topics: US News