Walter Elias Disney was born on December 5, 1901 in Chicago, Illinois in Cook County to Elias and Flora (Call) Disney. Elias was Irish-Canadian and Flora was of German and English descent. Walt's great-grandfather, Arundel Elias Disney, emigrated from Ireland where he was born in 1801. Arundel was a descendant of Robert d'Isigny, a Frenchman who had traveled to England with William the Conqueror in 1066. The family changed the d'Isigny name to "Disney" and settled in the English village now known as Norton Disney, south of the city of Lincoln, in the county of Lincolnshire.
Walt Disney is a cultural icon. He was an American entrepreneur, cartoonist, animator, voice actor, and film producer and known for his influence and contributions to entertainment during the 20th century. In 1923 he and his brother Roy O. Disney co-founded The Walt Disney Company.
Walt and his staff created numerous famous fictional characters including Mickey Mouse, Donald Duck, and Goofy. He was the original voice for Mickey. During his lifetime, he won 22 Academy Awards and received four honorary Academy Awards from a total of 59 nominations, including a record of four in one year.
Walt died from lung cancer on December 15, 1966 in Burbank, California, leaving behind a vast legacy.
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