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Disney execs offer condolences after toddler dies in alligator attack

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GREGG NEWTON/AFP/Getty Images

After tragedy struck Disney’s Grand Floridian Resort & Spa in the Orlando area — where rescuers on Wednesday recovered the body of a two-year-old boy who had been dragged into the waters by an alligator — Disney executives have issued statements expressing condolences.

The boy, who has been identified as Lane Graves of Elkhorn, Nebraska was dragged into the Seven Seas Lagoon by an alligator around 9:30 p.m. on Tuesday night, according to authorities. He was playing in shallow water when the alligator emerged from the lake and attacked him. According to the Associated Press, the father of the boy, Matt Graves, attempted to fend off the animal, suffering hand lacerations in the process, but he was unsuccessful.

People reports that Orange County Sheriff Jerry Demings said that an autopsy report is still pending, but “there’s likely no question in my mind that the child was drowned by the alligator.”

Disney CEO Bob Iger called the family personally and released a statement as well. “As a parent and a grandparent, my heart goes out to the Graves family during this time of devastating loss,” he said. “My thoughts and prayers are with them, and I know everyone at Disney joins me in offering our deepest sympathies.”

George A. Kalogridis, president of Walt Disney World Resort, also offered his condolences in a statement on Wednesday. “There are no words to convey the profound sorrow we feel for the family and their unimaginable loss,” he said. “We are devastated and heartbroken by this tragic accident and are doing what we can to help them during this difficult time. On behalf of everyone at Disney, we offer them our deepest sympathy.”

It has been a horrific week for Orlando, as 49 people were killed and 53 others were injured in a mass shooting at an LGBT nightclub, and singer Christina Grimmie was fatally shot after a show.

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