Mom shares photo of son playing in lagoon an hour before alligator attack at Disney

Posted at 3:32 PM, Jun 16, 2016
and last updated 2016-06-16 15:32:05-04

LAKE BUENA VISTA, Fla. — Jennifer Venditti says her son was wading in the same spot at Disney’s Grand Floridian Resort on Tuesday where an alligator grabbed 2-year-old Lane Graves less than an hour later.

In a Facebook post, Venditti defended Graves’ parents while sharing pictures of her son standing in the lagoon near a Disney World hotel.

Graves said she took the photos of her son “between 8 and 8:30 p.m.” The incident happened shortly after 9 p.m.

Police found Graves’ body in the lagoon Wednesday, not far from where he was attacked and dragged into the water by an alligator Tuesday night.

“I can’t imagine anyone could sleep knowing that the helicopter was searching for a missing child taken by an alligator,” she said in her Facebook post. “I can’t help but wonder if we played with him, did I talk to his Mom??”

Venditti said that there are “no swimming” signs posted, but nothing that warned guests of the presence of alligators.

But just as importantly, she wanted to differ critics from the parents.

“I’ve already seen posts criticizing the parents. I can assure you alligators were not on my mind at all when Channing was in the water. It’s a tiny beach, surrounded by pools, water slides, a restaurant and a fire pit. I can’t conceive that an alligator would be in such a busy, small space.”