"X" Atencio (courtesy D23 and Wikipedia)

Discussion in 'Disney Chat' started by Shelterkat, Sep 12, 2017.

  1. Shelterkat

    Shelterkat A Very Merry Unbirthday!

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    Disney Legend Xavier “X†Atencio, a former Imagineer and Disney animator, passed away on September 10 at the age of 98. X was responsible for helping bring to life a number of beloved Disney parks attractions including Pirates of the Caribbean and Haunted Mansion, as well as such animated classics as Pinocchio and Fantasia.

    Atencio was born in Walsenburg, Colorado, in 1919. He was a Disney artist from 1938 until 1965, when he became an Imagineer to help design the Disneyland Railroad's Primeval World diorama segment. He then contributed to various Disney attractions. He wrote the script for both Adventure Thru Inner Space and Pirates of the Caribbean, for which he also penned the lyrics to the theme song, "Yo Ho (A Pirate's Life for Me)" and provided the voices of various characters within the attraction, including the talking skull. He also wrote the script for the Haunted Mansion, including the lyrics to that attraction's theme song, "Grim Grinning Ghosts (The Screaming Song)." Atencio's voice can also be heard emanating from the coffin in the Haunted Mansion's conservatory. In addition, in the Disneyland mansion, when the attraction comes to a temporary halt it is his voice that provides the emergency spiel.[SUP][5][/SUP] Another brief voice-over Atencio provided was for the Submarine Voyage Thru Liquid Space where he is addressed as "Bridge." He also wrote the lyrics to Buddy Baker's music for the retired Magic Kingdom attraction If You Had Wings.
    Atencio served as a photo interpreter in the U.S. Army Air Forces from 1941 to 1945 during World War II, reaching the rank of captain in the 2nd Photo Tech Squadron. Stationed in England, he was part of team that would analyze aerial surveillance for military intelligence.[SUP][6][/SUP][SUP][7][/SUP][SUP][8][/SUP][SUP][9][/SUP] He retired from The Walt Disney Company in 1984 and was named a Disney Legend in 1996. Atencio passed away on September 10, 2017, at the age of 98.
  2. Poohlady5

    Poohlady5 DPF Charter Member DPF Charter Member

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    Thanks for posting this!
  3. dancecats

    dancecats Administrator Staff Member DPF Administrator

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    I was afraid this was what this thread would be when I saw the heading.

    I consider myself very fortunate to have gotten to see X at both the DLR HM 40th Anniversary event and the inaugural D23 convention that immediately followed. I don't think I'll ever forget hearing him sing a verse of 'Grim Grinning Ghosts' or just enjoying the exchanges between him and the other brilliant Imagineer panelists. The world has lost an amazing creative mind, but his contributions will be enjoyed by generations.

    RIP X, you will be missed but never forgotten. Prayers and pixie dust go out to your friends and family during this time.

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