Witness recounts moments after teen’s fatal fall at ICON Park in Orlando
ORLANDO, Florida. – The past few days have been tough for 20-year-old Montrey Williams.
“Just seeing that play over and over again in my head, it’s really hard,” the Orlando native said.
Williams recalled Thursday night when Tire Sampson, 14, lost his life after somehow falling out of his seat during the ICON Park Free Fall race.
“My first reaction was like a dream. I didn’t think it was real until I approached him,” he said.
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Williams told News 6 he was with his girlfriend standing in front of the ride as they watched the guests ride.
“As for the workers, they didn’t do their job properly. Nobody walked around to see if everyone was safe, you know, locked up,” Williams assured.
Moments later, as the carousel descended, the next image Williams said he saw was of the teenager lying face down.
“He called me, he said, ‘Mommy, mommy, mommy!’ frantic, so my heart was racing, and I said, ‘What’s wrong? What’s wrong?’ He said, ‘Somebody just fell off the carousel,'” said Mandisa Duppins, Williams’ mother. “He was FaceTime me, he said, ‘Mom, look, someone just fell. So I instantly, being raised in a home with 20 years of nursing experience, you jump in, ‘Is- what it breathes, does it move, has anyone checked it?
Duppins said his son took photos moments after the fall, but decided not to post the images on social media.
“When it comes to something like that, you want to protect the family in every way possible, so I salute him for that because he’s seen a lot,” she said. “He took his pictures, because if someone came up to him and said, ‘What happened?’ he would have something that could possibly help Tyr and help his family understand what could have happened.
The company that operates the ride said workers were responsible for checking the restraint system lights to ensure they were attached correctly.
“The ride won’t go up unless the harnesses are locked. There was no indication there was anything different,” said John Stine, a representative for Slingshot Group.
According to the company, if the restraint does not lock properly, the ride will not work.
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