-- Orlando resident Jordan Ranges takes her grandson Collin to Disney’s Grand Floridian Resort & Spa in Bay Lake, Florida, almost every week, where the 3-year-old loves to play along the shoreline of the Seven Lagoon Seas. It’s the same area where a 2-year-old Nebraska boy was dragged into the water by an alligator Tuesday night.
Now, Ranges said she won’t ever let Collin near the man-made lake again.
“He thinks that’s his pool,” Ranges told ABC News. “He goes and plays right there at the water’s edge. He won’t again.”
The toddler, who was with his family visiting from Nebraska, was “playing” in the water at the Seven Seas Lagoon around 9:15 p.m. when the gator attacked, officials said. The reptile is estimated to be between 4 and 7 feet-long.
Orange County Sheriff Jerry Demings said at a news conference today there’s “no question” the missing boy is dead. After countless hours and dozens of rescue crews, the search is still underway for the child’s body in the artificial lagoon, located on Disney property. The resort has temporarily shuttered its beach areas and recreational marinas in the wake of the gator attack.
Ranges, who works as a pediatric nurse at an Orlando hospital, told ABC News the tragedy “hit home.” She posted a photo on Instagram of Collin on the same beach where the Nebraska boy was snatched up, saying she’ll never let her grandson play so close to the water again. She called it a “freak accident” and said she doesn’t blame the boy’s parents.
There are no warning signs of alligators in the area, but there are notices posted against swimming in the Seven Seas Lagoon. Officials said the Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission works closely with Disney to remove any alligators that could pose a threat to people, pets or property.
Ranges is an annual pass-holder at Disney and said she has never seen an alligator at the theme park since moving to Florida 15 years ago.
“I’m at Disney all the time. Collin has run up and down that beach,” she said. “Never, ever has it crossed my mind that a gator would come out.”
Still, this won’t stop the 48-year-old grandmother from bringing her beloved grandson to the Disney resort.
“He absolutely loves Disney,” Ranges said. “But as far as walking along the water’s edge again, never. I don’t care if he’s 18-years-old, he’s not doing it.”
Disney is the parent company of ABC News.