Schlitterban lifeguard's legacy lives on

Schlitterbahn Island Resort and Waterpark

He had only been employed as a Schlitterbahn lifeguard for a month but, 20-year-old Nicolas Benavides made such a lasting impression, that it TMs been difficult for staff to cope with his death.

Despite his short stay with the water part, his ties with the Schlitterbahn date generations back.

"(The family) has been part of building our parks, this park in particular, Spokeswoman Winter Prosapio said. I know that our owner's family, Jeff Henry and the other Henrys, know the family personally, have been in touch with the family personally and visited the family personally at the hospital."

Prosapio adds Benavides TM death has taken a toll on everyone from top executives to staff members.Reinforcements from other Schlitterbahn parks are on the Island to fill-in for employees having a difficult time.

"We've brought in people from all across our parks system to look at the system and to help operate them, Prosapio said. Immediately following a tragedy like this, it's very difficult for people to focus and we recognize that the emotions are extremely high."

OSHA continues on site investigating how Benavides and a 27-year-old maintenance worker were injured when working on a wave generator Thursday.

The generator has been cleared for operation by OSHA, Prosapio said, and daily operations at the park continue as scheduled.

Benavides' family tells Action 4 News Benavides' organs were donated. Those who knew him say they're glad his legacy will live on.

"Organ donation can result in saving 7 people's lives, so I think it was a very generous choice that the family made," Prosapio said.

The 27-year-old man has been released from the hospital and is recovering.

To find out more about Organ Donation visit

Click here to read Nicolas Benavides' obituary.