My name is Matthew Pilla. I have always been a huge fan of Disney ever since I was a very little. The first time I went to Walt Disney World when I was 7 years old, I knew in my heart that Disney was my passion for the future. After the excitement of the first trip, 9 more to WDW had come out of it. By this time, I had become a huge Disney history fan, Disneyana collector, and wanted to get closer to my dream. I decided to mail a letter. A letter to the Walt Disney Co. This was Feb. 2009. I had included my passion for Disney, how I want to work for Disney when I grow up, and my absolute love and respect for the man himself….Walter Elias Disney. I know so much about Disney now, I have read several Disney books and I love learning more. After a few weeks of waiting, I got a reply from the Disney Chief Archivist, Dave Smith. He had told me that my letter had been referred to the Walt Disney Archives, and all about his position and history with Disney. After this, I knew that I was getting closer to Disney. 3 years later, I have been to the Walt Disney Archives with Dave several times, we have written back and fourth thousands of messages, and we recently took a Disney Cruise together on the Wonder. I consider Dave to be apart of my family. We are very close, and I think to myself now that I am 16. Who would have ever predicted that out of that letter 3 years ago, that this friendship would come out of it. The first time we went to Disneyland together, he took me up into Walt Disney’s private apartment in the firehouse. I cried so hard, because here is the man I have read about, and my idol. And I am in the place where he would come with family and friends while he was in Disneyland to relax. Occasionally he would spend the night too I am now new to the Countdown to D23 website, and I hope all of you reading this can get a perspective of my love and heart for Disney. I have wished upon a star, and as the beloved song from Pinocchio says. “When you wish upon a star, your dreams come true.” My dream continues to come true every single day with Disney in my life.
I I hope you like my Disney story.