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Walt Disney World is supposed to be the most magical place on Earth. Unfortunately, for one recent family, the trip to the theme park turned out quite sad. It's now being reported that a 70-year-old died earlier this year of a heart attack while enjoying a wave pool at Disney's Blizzard Beach Water Park.
The unnamed man is reported to have had a pre-existing heart condition prior to the heart attack. His death was listed on a quarterly report that Walt Disney World releases regarding injuries sustained in the park. The incident happened on June 10th at Melt Away Bay, a one-acre wave pool that is part of Blizzard Beach, a Walt Disney World attraction themed as a former ski resort that has melted into a water park.
The description of Melt Away Bay on the Walt Disney World website refers to the waves in the pool as "short, bobbing waves" which certainly doesn't sound too strenuous, but it also refers to the pool as an "invigorating swim" though there are no official restrictions regarding who can use the wave pool as far as the standard age or height restrictions that can be found on other Walt Disney World attractions.
In addition to the heart attack, Walt Disney World's quarterly injury report (via WESH) also mentions that a woman went into labor after going on the Kilimanjaro Safari ride at Disney's Animal Kingdom in April. The ride vehicles used for the safari can be quite bumpy, which likely resulted in the induced labor. A man also lost consciousness during the Mission: Space attraction at EPCOT. That ride provides significant g-forces and actually has a second version of the attraction for guests who want to experience a lower stress version of the ride. He appears to have suffered no ill effects.
A death at Walt Disney World is certainly tragic. A 70-year-old man was likely there as part of a larger family vacation with loved ones who were all enjoying the water park on a warm summer day. Disney World is supposed to be a place where you make happy memories with your friends and family, but that's not how it worked out in this case.
Over the years there have been more deaths than you might think at Walt Disney World, though most of them fall into a similar pattern to this one here. Somebody with a weak heart goes on a ride like a roller coaster and ends up having a heart attack. In most of these cases, the death is ultimately ruled due to natural causes. Back in 2007, a man collapsed and eventually died at the same water park. He also had an existing heart condition.