Matt and Melissa Graves, parents of the sweet toddler who was snatched by an alligator during his family’s Walt Disney World vacation, have a request. As they buried their beloved little boy Lane today, they have asked supporters in their parish, their community and wherever you are to honor Lane’s memory by tying a royal blue ribbon around your tree (or on your fencepost, or your mailbox).
The pain which these parents must feel today is unimaginable. Of course, there has been an outpouring of love and support from across the country and around the world–but how could we help?

Family friend Amy Alvano said on Facebook last Thursday that the blue ribbon campaign was started by neighbors of Matt and Melissa. She wrote:

“Please share at the request of the friends and loved ones. Melissa and Matt’s neighbors are starting a campaign to tie blue ribbons to every tree. It is a beautiful sign of solidarity for the family and they need to see we are with them. Please share with your homeowners associations, or please take head of it in your own neighborhoods. We have been asked by so many what they can do to help and this would be a great place to start. We would appreciate any and all help to get this going. Thank you again for all of the support and please continue praying for them all.” 

Lane’s father Matt has posted a message on the website of their Catholic parish, St. Patrick’s in Elkhorn, Nebraska. Matt writes:
“Melissa and I continue to deal with the loss of our beloved boy, Lane, and are overwhelmed with the support and love we have received from family and friends in our community as well as from around the country. We understand the public’s interest, but as we move forward this weekend, we ask for and appreciate the privacy we need to lay our son to rest. Neither Melissa, myself or anyone from our family will be speaking publicly; we simply cannot at this time.”

The Graves family remembered their son, who was drowned by an alligator near Disney’s Grand Floridian Resort and Spa, at a funeral liturgy this morning at St. Patrick’s. The parish has posted a notice, thanking people for their love, prayers and support. They also suggest ways that people can support the family during this difficult time:

1- Pray
2- Tie a royal blue ribbon around your tree to show your love and support.
3- Donations of any kind; letters, monetary, items, mass intentions can be sent to:St. Patricks Church
20500 W. Maple Road
Elkhorn, NE 68022

Any checks should be made out to St. Patrick’s Church. To ensure that 100% of all donations for the Graves family are received, Liturgical Publications -WeShare (the parish’s online donation service) will be donating back any processing fees.

A private wake was held at St. Patrick’s Church, with no visitation. The funeral Mass was held at 10:00 a.m. (Central Time) today, with burial following at Resurrection Cemetery.
Eternal rest grant unto him, O Lord, and let perpetual light shine upon him.
God, grant Lane’s parents your peace and let them know of your love, as they go through this devastating event.