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Walt Disney's Daughter, Diane Disney Miller, Dies at 79

Diane Disney Miller, the daughter of Walt Disney, dies at her home in Napa, Calif. at the age of 79.

Diane Disney Miller, the daughter of Walt Disney died Tuesday at her home in Napa, Calif., after suffering a recent fall, according to a report by The Hollywood Reporter. She was 79.

Miller was the only biological daughter of Disney and his wife, Lillian Bounds Disney. Her sister, Sharon Mae, who was adopted by the Disneys at birth in 1936, died in 1993. Her husband of 59 years, Ron W. Miller, was CEO of the Walt Disney Co. until 1984, when he was ousted in favor of Michael Eisner and Frank Wells in a move supported by her cousin, Roy E. Disney.

Diane Disney Miller was a force in making sure architect Frank Gehry completed the Los Angeles concert hall that bears her father’s name, insisting that the $20 million left from her mother’s original gift could not be used unless Gehry’s firm remained in charge.

Miller also was the founder and head of the Walt Disney Family Museum in San Francisco.

“We are deeply saddened by the loss of Diane Disney Miller, and our thoughts are with her family during his difficult time,” Disney president and CEO Bob Iger said in a statement.

“As the beloved daughter of Walt Disney and one of his inspirations for creating Disneyland, she holds a special place in the history of the Walt Disney Company and in the hearts of fans everywhere. She will be remembered for her grace and generosity and tireless work to preserve her father’s legacy, and she will be greatly missed by all who knew her.”

In addition to her husband, survivors include seven children.

Jennifer Wolfe's picture

Formerly Editor-in-Chief of Animation World Network, Jennifer Wolfe has worked in the Media & Entertainment industry as a writer and PR professional since 2003.