‘I Hate Life Right Now’

Autopsy results for the 14-year-old who died after falling from a ride in an Orlando, Florida, amusement park have been released by the city’s top medical examiner.

The findings concluded that the Missouri native suffered several bone fractures all over his body, listed his actual weight (which was too much for him to have been admitted to the ride) and that the young man ultimately died from “blunt force trauma,” a trauma that has transformed into one his mother is now experiencing.

dr Joshua D. Stephany, the chief medical examiner servicing District Nine in Florida, published the Report of Autopsy for Tire Sampson, an honor student and football player who slipped out of his seat on the 430-foot high FreeFall ride at ICON Park and fell hundreds of feet to his death on March 24.

He conducted the autopsy the day after the teen died, and almost three months after the horrific accident ruled the cause of death “blunt force trauma,” according to a copy of the autopsy report received by Atlanta Black Star.

It also revealed what the parents already told investigators and their lawyers, the young man was 383 pounds when he died and appeared to look older “than the reported age of 14 years old. The boy was almost 100 pounds heavier than the ride permitted as per the operation manual.

The details of his injuries have been made public days after what would have been Sampson’s eighth grade graduation from City Garden Montessori school in St. Louis. The school posthumously honored him with a certificate of completion.

His mother, Nekia Dodd posted about the tributes the school community made in his honor and expressed how she is dealing with her emotions during this moving-up season without her son.

Dodd shared “My baby is the 100th City Garden Montessori Alumni of 2022!!! I always told you to aim for the stars and now you’re up there with them! I’ll continue to make you proud as you have always done me! #SleepWellBigTick.”

Tire Sampson graduation post. (Courtesy of Nekia Dodd’s Facebook)

The school also named a tree and a bench after him.

Tire Sampson graduation post 2. (Courtesy of Nekia Dodd’s Facebook)

While she tried to keep it upbeat, she took to social media to express her feelings, captioning a video post of her son canvasing his far too short life, “Even though I smile, laugh & joke on the outside, I fell (sic) entirely empty on the inside.”

“Lord, I’m still waiting for someone to tell me that I was in an extended dream,” she continued. “And I can finally wake up now & walk in his room to see him laying across the bed on his phone. I hate life right now…”

Sharing his nickname, she wrote on the TikTok, #SleepWellBigTick, and scored the picture collage with Celine Dion’s “Because You Loved Me.”

The family has enlisted Michael Haggard from The Haggard Law Firm, to support them in their wrongful death lawsuit, filed on Sunday, April 24, against the companies connected to the park and the ride, including the manufacturers, the operators, and contractors.

The 60-plus page claim filed in Orange County submits ICON Park, The Slingshot Group, and its companies, Orlando Slingshot are responsible for the negligence that killed the young man.

The filing further states the companies knew the ride was unsafe but did not have adequate signage to warn people of the potential dangers, nor signs about the height and weight requirements, cautionary measures that would have saved Sampson’s life.

Orlando Slingshot released a statement via their lawyer Trevor Arnold of GrayRobinson PA, after the lawsuit was filed, saying, “The loss of Tire Sampson was a tragic accident. We continue to communicate and cooperate with representatives of Tyre’s family, as well as the Department of Agriculture.”

“We are devoted to working with our lawmakers in making lasting safety changes in the amusement park industry,” it continued.

Since the accident, the ride has been closed. The parents are asking for the ride to be torn down and never open again.

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