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July 1, 2006 | From the Associated Press
The 12-year-old boy who died after riding a Walt Disney World roller coaster had a congenital heart defect, medical examiners found in an autopsy Friday. The body of Michael Russell, the son of an Iraq war veteran, was autopsied one day after the boy stopped breathing while riding Disney-MGM's Rock 'n' Roller Coaster. More tests will be conducted to determine the cause of death, said Dr. Sara H. Irrgang, an Orange County associate medical examiner.
February 19, 2006
MARKING a formal end to hot meals in coach on domestic flights, American Airlines in September plans to start removing rear galleys from its MD-80 jets, which fly most of its domestic routes. Front galleys, where food is prepared for first-class passengers, will remain. "We've pretty much concluded that hot food in the coach section is not something we'll be able to afford," said Art Pappas, American's managing director in Los Angeles.
January 11, 2006 | From Bloomberg News
Burbank-based Walt Disney Co. set a holiday-season attendance record at its Walt Disney World resort in Florida, Chief Financial Officer Thomas Staggs said. A marketing campaign to promote the 50th anniversary of Disneyland in Anaheim boosted attendance throughout Disney's parks, Staggs said. Walt Disney World's strong performance came despite disruptions and closures caused by hurricanes.
December 24, 2005 | Kathy Blumenstock, Washington Post
Put aside the presents and step away from that eggnog: It's time for a TV holiday tradition, as Walt Disney World's annual parade celebrates Christmas. The 22nd annual Walt Disney World Christmas Day Parade will be hosted by Regis Philbin and Kelly Ripa in Orlando, Fla., with "American Idol" host Ryan Seacrest at Disneyland in Anaheim. It airs Sunday at 2:30 p.m. PST on ABC.
December 1, 2005 | Valerie J. Nelson, Times Staff Writer
Card Walker, a mailroom employee who rose to become the first chief executive at the Walt Disney Co. who wasn't a member of the Disney family, leading the company from 1971 to 1983, has died. He was 89. Walker, who oversaw the development of Walt Disney World, died of congestive heart failure Monday at his home in La Canada Flintridge, the company announced. During his tenure, Walker brokered the deal for the company's first international theme park: Tokyo Disneyland, which opened in 1983.
November 16, 2005 | From Associated Press
Two children who died in separate incidents this summer at Walt Disney World were both victims of irregular heartbeats linked to natural causes, the medical examiner's office said Tuesday. Daudi Bamuwamye, a 4-year-old who died in June after going on the rocket ride "Mission: Space" at Epcot Center, had an abnormal thickening of his heart muscle caused by a condition present since birth, doctors said. Jerra Kirby, a 12-year-old girl from Newport News, Va.
July 17, 2005 | Kimi Yoshino and Dave McKibben, Times Staff Writers
To build his dream theme park in Anaheim a half-century ago, Walt Disney borrowed against his life insurance policy and cashed in property, including a vacation home in Palm Springs, to pay the $17-million construction bill. When the Anaheim theme park opened July 17, 1955 -- with cranky Southern Californians fanning themselves on a sweltering hot day -- toilets clogged, the food ran out and women's high heels sank into wet asphalt. Disney officials still call it Black Sunday.
July 14, 2005 | From Times Wire Reports
Disney World in Orlando reopened a thrill ride that was closed when a 16-year-old British girl almost died of cardiac arrest after riding it. Disney invited an official from the state Bureau of Fair Rides Inspection to monitor an inspection of the "Twilight Zone Tower of Terror," which the park does not typically do, in an effort to calm any public anxiety. Leanne Deacon of Kibworth, England, remained in critical condition after suffering cardiac arrest minutes after exiting the attraction.
June 15, 2005 | From Associated Press
A 4-year-old boy died after a spin on a Walt Disney World spaceship ride so intense that seven riders have been taken to the hospital since the ride opened in 2003. Daudi Bamuwamye lost consciousness Monday aboard "Mission: Space," which spins riders in a giant centrifuge that subjects them to twice the normal force of gravity. The boy's mother carried him off the ride, and paramedics and a theme park worker tried to revive him. He died at a hospital. An autopsy Tuesday showed no trauma.
May 1, 2005 | Richard Verrier, Times Staff Writer
Walt Disney Co. these days has more than one mouse on its mind. As it ramps up a worldwide celebration this week marking the 50th anniversary of Disneyland, the Burbank company knows it can no longer rely solely on Mickey and his friends to lure sophisticated young consumers into the Magic Kingdom. Increasingly aware that children today are "born with a mouse in their hands," as one expert puts it, Disney scientists and designers are working overtime to appeal to the Internet generation.
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