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Mother of boy who died on Orlando ride says she doesn't know woman who made comments about her son

Orlando FreeFall ride
Posted at 7:25 PM, Mar 30, 2022

The mother of a 14-year-old boy who died on an amusement park ride in Orlando said she doesn't know the woman who said her son was turned away from two other rides because of his size.

A woman, who claimed to be Tyre Sampson's cousin, said she spoke with the teen before he fell from the Orlando FreeFall ride.

However, a police spokesperson told the Orlando Sentinel Tyre's mother doesn't know the woman who was making those claims.

The teen fell to his death from the amusement park ride that's taller than the Statue of Liberty and located along a busy street in the heart of Orlando, Florida. Sheriff’s officials and emergency crews responded to a call late on Thursday at Icon Park, which is located in the city’s tourist district along International Drive.

The ride opened late last year. Sheriff's officials say he was taken to a hospital, where he died. The 430-foot ride is billed as the world's tallest free-standing drop tower.

A rising middle school football player in Missouri, he was only 14-years-old but already 6 feet, 5 inches tall and well over 300 pounds. Sampson fell to his death from the towering Florida amusement ride. Lawyers for his family want to know if negligence about his size, or other factors, played a role.

Investigators on Saturday continued to examine what happened on Thursday night when Sampson dropped out of his seat from the 430-foot, free-fall amusement park ride, not far from Disney World.

Dollywood amusement park in Tennessee says it has temporarily closed a ride developed by the same maker of the Florida attraction. Dollywood said that it was saddened to hear about the death of Sampson. Based in Pigeon Forge, Dollywood says it has temporarily closed its Drop Line ride out of an abundance of caution.