Walt Disney

Walt Disney in a 1937 "Snow White" Trailer.

Walt Disney (1901-1966) was an entrepreneur, animator, voice actor, film producer and the developer of Mickey Mouse. Expanding into the amusement park industry, he opened Disneyland, Disney World and EPCOT.

In the late 1930s, I was a starving art student. My art teacher had recognized that I had talent and paid for my tuition at Pasadena Junior College in California. The dollar a week that my parents gave me for an allowance was intended to be used as fare on the public bus, but since my cousin had a car, I rode with him to school each day. This allowed me to spend my dollar on art supplies or food.

My art teacher arranged for me to model for other art classes, thereby enhancing my income. Most students at this school were children of the wealthy. I had very few nice clothes that I could wear as a model, but did own a blue lace dress that I had worn for high school graduation. It was in this graduation dress that I posed for an art class. After class I walked out and went by Walt Disney, who was in this class and had sketched me. Disney already had fame and fortune in his pockets, and oh how I wanted that sketch. I made my request, but he said he couldn’t.

Right then, he tore the sketch down from the easel, wadded it up and put it in one of the very large pockets in his over-sized sweater. I was also crushed and wadded up, just like my picture. Had this been today, I would have snapped a photo on my cell phone to have more than just a memory.
Tootise King, Howard, member of Sangre de Cristo Electric