Seven Summits Expeditions, Frank G. Wells. That’s what the first photo captures in the Magic Kingdom Disney-legend tribute window.
Frank Wells was the original choice for CEO to replace Ron Miller (Walt’s son-in-law) in 1984. As the story has been shared with me, Frank turned it down, because he said Disney needed a creative person at the helm. Frank told his suitors that if they got the young Paramount Studios executive, Michael Eisner, as the new Disney CEO, Frank said he would be willing to be the COO.
Ten years later, Frank was tragically killed in a Heli-skiing accident.
Unknown to most Disney Cast Members is this story and the back story of Frank and a mountain climbing partner and their attempt to summit the highest peak on each of the seven continents. They summited six peaks, but did not make it to the top of Mount Everest.
That’s the significance to the window.
i had the privilege to spend two-and-a-half years (1988-1990) working in a Disney World office that handled Michael and Frank’s Orlando itinerary every time they visited. i even got to meet and interact with both of them.
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It would be misguided to think I’m trying to stir up bad memories. We celebrate our birthday until we die. We celebrate and remember significant things because it’s part of the fabric of our lives. Reminders of life’s priorities.