Family spokesperson says 'their world is shattered' after 6-year-old dies at amusement park

GLENWOOD SPRINGS, Colorado -- A friend of the family of the 6-year-old girl who died at an amusement park in the western Colorado town of Glenwood Springs is speaking out.

Authorities are still investigating the tragic death of the girl on the Haunted Mine Drop ride at the Glenwood Caverns Adventure Park.

A friend of her family said they're devastated beyond words.

"This is a parent's worst nightmare and something you don't wish on your worst enemy," said Bementayehu Mekonnen.

The Estifanos lost their daughter Wongel in a fatal accident Sunday.

The Haunted Mine Drop ride puts riders in a near freefall for 110 feet.

ABC News was told park employees began administering first aid until paramedics arrived but she did not survive.

Investigators are still trying to determine what happened.

"Their world shattered," Mekonnen said. "One moment they are in denial. The next minute they are trying to plead with God to bring her back. They are bargaining with him. They are angry."

While it has not been determined if the park was in neglect, Colorado laws can limit the right to sue a ride operator even if they were at fault.

The Colorado Department of Labor and Employment said the ride was inspected in June and has passed inspections since it opened in 2017.

Mekonnen said the family is determined to enact change in their daughter's name.

"They wouldn't want anyone to go through what they are going through right now, so they're going to do everything they can to make sure this never happens again -- even through her death, she's going to make a difference," Mekonnen said.
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