44 Year Old Man Dies after Riding Big Thunder Mountain at Disney World

by Dom
July 18, 2023
Big Thunder Mountain Railroad scenery.

A recent state report reveals a tragic incident at Florida’s largest theme park two months ago. In late May, a 44-year-old man collapsed and tragically passed away after riding the popular Big Thunder Mountain Railroad roller coaster at the Magic Kingdom. The exact cause of death is still pending as authorities conduct an autopsy.

The man’s identity remains confidential at the request of his wife, who declined interviews. According to his obituary, he was a devoted husband and father of three, known for his compassion and attentiveness as a physician.

The Department of Agriculture and Consumer Services provided limited details, stating that the man collapsed after exiting the Frontierland roller coaster on May 26 and subsequently passed away from a personal illness. The incident occurred on Disney property, prompting the prompt response of paramedics from the Central Florida Tourism Oversight District.

911 calls made by a bystander and a Disney cast member shed some light on the situation. The man had a seizure and fell to the ground at the ride’s exit. However, there was a doctor present who performed CPR alongside others until paramedics arrived.

Notably, this is not the first unfortunate event to occur on this particular roller coaster. In 2017, another guest with a preexisting condition also collapsed and later passed away at the hospital.

The report also includes two additional incidents from different parks. A 9-year-old girl experienced loss of consciousness after riding the Magic Kingdom’s newest coaster, TRON Lightcycle Run, while a 23-year-old woman fainted on SeaWorld’s Pipeline coaster.

As per protocol, theme parks such as Disney World, Universal Orlando, SeaWorld, Legoland, and Busch Gardens Tampa Bay are required to self-disclose serious visitor injuries on park rides. The state releases quarterly reports to maintain transparency.

While this news is undoubtedly tragic, it serves as a reminder of the importance of safety and proper maintenance in theme parks. Our thoughts and prayers go out to the victim and their family.

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