Father of Teen Who Fell to His Death from Amusement Park Ride Demands Attraction be Torn Down

·2 min read
People visit a makeshift memorial for Tyre Sampson outside the Orlando Free Fall ride at the ICON Park entertainment complex, Wednesday, April 20, 2022, in Orlando, Fla. Sampson, a teenager visiting from Missouri on spring break, fell to his death while on the ride.
People visit a makeshift memorial for Tyre Sampson outside the Orlando Free Fall ride at the ICON Park entertainment complex, Wednesday, April 20, 2022, in Orlando, Fla. Sampson, a teenager visiting from Missouri on spring break, fell to his death while on the ride.

The father of Tyre Sampson, Yarnell, and civil rights attorney Ben Crump called for the dismantling of the ride that caused Tyre to fall to his death, according to ABC News. Their press conference follows the release of the autopsy report detailing Sampson’s cause of death. Yarnell said he fears his son’s death will be forgotten if the ride is still in operation.

Reports say Tyre, 14, visited ICON Park in Orlando during his spring break this year. He was 100 pounds overweight for the FreeFall ride, however, an investigation found a ride operator manually adjusted his seat before he boarded. Tyre fell from the 430-foot ride and videos of the incident went viral on social media.

Read more

Per ABC’s report, Yarnell’s birthday fell on Father’s Day. He said this was the first time he’d be able to celebrate it with his son.

More from ClickOrlando:

“The goal is is to get 25,000 signed petitions to get this ride taken down,” said Yarnell Sampson — Tyre Sampson’s father — who spoke alongside his lawyer, Ben Crump. “What my wish is — I would like to have a permanent memorial here for my son stating that he had passed away and his legacy will live on and give proper respect to the dead that needs it.”

Crump and Yarnell Sampson were also joined by state Rep. Geraldine Thompson, D-Orlando, who plans to introduce the “Tyre Sampson bill” to the Florida Legislature.

“We’re still working on the bill that will be filed the very first day of the next legislative session,” Thompson said. “This bill that will be introduced will take into account the safety records of any company that wants to operate a ride of this nature.”

According to CNN, Tyre’s autopsy found his cause of death was blunt force trauma which resulted in multiple fractures, lacerations, a hemorrhaging to his head and other extremities. Sampson said Monday his son’s face was bloated and almost unrecognizable at his funeral.

The lawsuit filed against the ride’s owner, manufacturer and landlord alleges the ride was operated negligently, per ABC News. As the investigation continues, the ride has been closed to park visitors.

“I guarantee, you open that ride again, somebody else gonna’ die. It should never be operational at all,” said Sampson.