“If you can dream it, you can do it. Always remember that this whole thing was started with a dream and a mouse.” –Walt Disney
Walt Disney was a pioneer in the field of animation who transformed the world with his optimism, perseverance, and dedication to his craft. His legacy lives on and will continue for many years because of his determination to achieve his dreams. He was born on December 5, 1901 in Chicago, Illinois. Walt was one of five children, including four boys and one girl. Shortly after Walt’s birth his family moved to Missouri. It was here that his interests in drawing and art began to emerge. At the age of seven, he started selling small sketches and drawings to his neighbors. One day Walt painted a pig on the whitewashed siding of the family home using tar as an alternative to paint, infuriating his father.
Walt’s father, Elias, was quite stern, and showed no interest in his artistic attempts. He felt that artistic matters should be left to the wealthy, or those who could afford such frivolity. Elias made his feelings regarding Walt’s interests clear, so Walt made certain his chores were finished before running off with his drawing pad and pencils. Fortunately, he found encouragement from his mother, Flora, and his older brother, Roy.
Walt Disney is an icon of American history. Everyone is aware of his success, but few people are aware of his failures. The fact that Walt was able to achieve so much in the face of many obstacles proves that he epitomizes the qualities of a true leader. Walt Disney, along with members of his staff, received more than 950 honors and citations from every nation in the world, including 48 Academy Awards and 7 Emmys in his lifetime. These achievements were all obtained as the result of Walt’s belief in the power of a dream.
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