Wednesday, November 20, 2013

A Pictorial Tribute to Diane Disney Miller

As i told you in my previous post Diane Disney Miller died yesterday in Napa, California, at the age of 79 from injuries sustained in a fall. I'm posting today a pictorial tribute to Diane, Walt Disney's elder daughter, a remarkable human being and a wonderful Lady.

Diane was born on December 18, 1933 and was not only the elder but also the only biological daughter of Walt and Lilian Disney. She had a younger sister, Sharon Mae Disney, whom the Disneys adopted at birth in 1936. Sharon died in 1993.

On the rare picture below, Walt is reading stories to his two daughters, Diane is on the right of the picture.

On the next picture shot a few years later, in 1941, Walt stands with his wife Lilian and Diane and Austrian ski racer and founder of Sugar Bowl ski resort Hannes Schroll at Sugar Bowl, in the Sierra Mountains near Donner Pass, California.

If i'm right, the two pictures below were shot during the famous trip of Walt Disney in Europe. Diane stands at the left ( on the picture ) of Walt all aboard the Queen Mary in early 1950's. My good friend and co-author of the DLP book Didier Ghez will release in a month from now his new book and it will be the first book of its kind to explore in details Walt's famous European trip!

On the picture below Diane is with her sister Sharon and Walt "playing" at his home with his famous miniature train.

In 1954 Diane Disney married with Ron W. Miller, a former professional american football player. Here are two pictures shot at the wedding.

Years later, Ron W. Miller became CEO of the Walt DIsney Company until 1984.

On the next picture Diane, left, is with Sharon at Disneyland's Golden Horseshoe celebrating Walt and Lilian wedding anniversary, and the picture was shot in July 1955, four days before the grand opening of Disneyland!

A few years later, Diane is at Disneyland's Autopia with Walt and his grand son, Christopher Miller.

On November 17, 1956 the Saturday Evening Post printed a great report of Diane Disney about Walt Disney. 

It was posted in eight parts and included great pictures of Walt with his family - here Diane is holding Chris, Walt's grandson...

...or also this one showing Walt in front of Disneyland Sleeping Beauty Castle with his grand son. You can read the full first part of Diane article in this article HERE

As a matter of fact it seems that these eight parts article in the Saturday Evening Post were a preview of Diane's biography about Walt "The Story of Walt Disney" published in 1957, Diane was 23 at that time.

Diane Disney Miller did many things in legacy to her father memory but she will be remembered also for two projects who became major achievements, the first one being the Walt Disney Concert Hall at Los Angeles, designed by architect Frank Gehry. 

On the picture above Diane stands with Frank Gehry, left, in front of the model. Below, Diane with Frank Gehry at the Grand Opening of the Walt Disney Concert Hall.

Her other achievement is of course the fantastic Walt Disney Family Museum at San Francisco. On the picture below Diane stands outside, in front of the museum facade...

...and on this next one, Diane is inside the museum.

Diane Disney went back several times at Disneyland specially for DL celebrations like in 2005 for DL 50th Anniversary, here with Disney Legend Art Linkletter...

...or more recently for the re-opening of Disney's California Adventure, standing near Walt's statue.

And it's with this great picture that i will end my pictorial tribute to Diane Disney Miller, such a wonderful Lady whom i will always regret to never have met in person. 

In the U.S, Bob Iger asked that all flags be put at half-mast in Disney theme parks and company buildings, in tribute to Diane.

Pictures: copyright Disney


Michaeland said...

She was indeed a nice down-to-earth person, and a daughter worthy of her special father.

Marco Antonio Garcia said...

She did many things to preserve the memory and legacy of her amazing father and for the general public to know who Walt Disney, the man (not the corporation), truly was.

The Walt Disney family museum is really great and a must go place to all Disney fans.

Thanks a lot for everything Diane and RIP.

Nikki Mearns said...

genuinely so sad that she's gone! Hope she's with her dad again though! Her memory will live on for sure just as Walt's has..