​Minister’s Roller Coaster 7,000 Times At Park


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July 14, 2012

Gary Coleman, a retired minister, spent his Fourth of July riding on the Diamondback roller coaster some 7,000 times at Ohio’s Kings Island amusement park.

Coleman, 70, said that he began riding the Diamondback when it opened in 2009 “just for fun.”

He would eventually spend 350 hours on the ride over the course of four years.

“I’ve always loved roller coasters since I’ve been a kid. It’s been a hobby. It’s what I like to do. I like to relax doing it. It’s a form of relaxation,” Coleman told ABC.

Coleman wore a t-shirt bearing the number 7,000 to mark the feat, the distance of which is equal to someone traveling across the U.S. and more than halfway back again, reports NBC 4 in Columbus.

Coleman told ABC he hopes to hit 10,000 rides by the end of next year.

He queues up alongside other thrill-seekers every time he goes for the ride, park employees said.

This season alone, he has visited the amusement park 32 times and has ventured on the Diamondback 1,190 times – or 37 rides a day.

This is a vast improvement on 2010 season when he averaged a mere 19 rides a day.

But his personal record was June 17, when he took the ride 111 times.

“My goal is to hit 10,000 rides by the end of next year. I love it. I think it’s fun. I just really enjoy it,” he said.

Coleman said he has been to the opening day for every roller coaster at the amusement park but that Diamondback was by far the best.