PIGEON FORGE (WATE) – It’s always fun to visit Dollywood, but the trip around the park this week went deeper than that for one Florida man. Because of his disability, he hadn’t enjoyed a good roller coaster ride in years, but that all changed when park workers told him no ride was off limits.
Alan Prescott’s smile couldn’t get any bigger after riding Dollywood’s Wild Eagle, something he, his wife Stacey and their friends Shane and Shelby Parmenter never thought would happen. Prescott was paralyzed from the waist down three years ago in an ATV accident. He still loves roller coasters and couldn’t resist the chance to visit Dollywood with the people to whom he’s closest.
They were reserving an electric wheelchair for him on the grounds that he, too, would get to join in the fun.
“They said, ‘Well, if you have anyone that can pick you up and put you on the ride, feel free to ride anything you want.’ Shane here is the muscle. He can pick me up and put me on anything,” said Prescott.
The happy group is now back home near Gainesville, Florida, and has a special message for Dolly Parton and the wonderful theme park that bears her name.
“It’s just a great experience, a great feeling to go somewhere and not feel like a burden to anybody or an inconvenience,” said Stacey Prescott.
The Prescotts left Dollywood hand in hand after enjoying the day like most any other couple with wonderful memories of their visit to East Tennessee.Related story: Dollywood’s ‘Lightning Rod’ roller coaster opening delayed