December 15, 1966. Not a day to celebrate, like a wedding anniversary or Independence Day, but a day of remembrance like Pearl Harbor or 9-11. Ten days after his 65th birthday, Walter Elias Disney passed away following complications from lung surgery, 50 years ago today.
While Walt normally worked very hard not to let the public, especially the kids, see him smoking, he was a heavy smoker from his early years and it took its toll on his life. In November, 1966, Walt was to undergo surgery to repair a neck injury that he had suffered in a polo accident. An X-ray taken prior to surgery revealed a dark spot on his left lung that was identified as cancer. He recovered from the lung surgery and initially returned to work, but began feeling ill by the end of the month. He spent Continue Reading →