Even at age 70, Gary Coleman will always be a kid at heart.
Coleman, of Monfort Heights, Ohio, celebrated his Fourth of July flying high just like all the fireworks. On America’s birthday, he rode the Diamondback roller coaster at Kings Island amusement park for the 7,000th time, even donning a shirt with the remarkable number on it. This is a pretty impressive record, considering the ride only opened in 2009.
“I’ve always loved roller coasters since I’ve been a kid. It’s been a hobby. It’s what I like to do. I like to relax doing it. It’s a form of relaxation,” Coleman said.
Coleman has gotten pretty cozy on the roller coaster. Check out these stats: In total, he’s spent more than 350 hours on the ride. As of Sunday, he had visited the amusement park 32 times this season alone, riding the coaster a combined 1,190 times, which, if you do the math, averages to 37 rides per day. But that’s nothing compared to his personal best on June 17 when he rode the ride 111 times.
“My goal is to hit 10,000 rides by the end of next year. I love it. I think it’s fun. I just really enjoy it,” he laughed.
He said he’s more committed to the ride that anyone else in the park.
“I was there the whole day. Clear up ’til midnight,” he said.
Coleman has gone to the opening day for every roller coaster at King Island amusement park, but said this one takes the cake.
“I thought it was the best coaster I’ve ridden in my whole life. At my age, it’s great. This one does not bang me around, it doesn’t jerk my neck or my body. It’s the smoothest, fastest coaster I’ve ever been on,” he said.
His favorite part of the roller coaster is that it allows for so much air time.
“I’ve gone down the highest coasters in the country. You always get used to the first dip, and then the rest of the time you’re in your seat. But this one, your legs are in the air, your hands are in the air, you’re out of the seat,” he said.
To get a better feel for Coleman’s high-flying addiction, click here to watch a point-of-view ride on the Diamondback. Just make sure you hit play 7,000 times.