Trapped Chilean Miners embrace new, magic memories at Walt Disney World


The story of the trapped Chilean Miners in 2010 was probably one of the most tragic stories of 2010. These miners who were trapped beneath the Earth’s surface for 69 days embrace new, magical memories this week at Walt Disney World.

“These courageous men captivated the world with their story of hope and perseverance,” said Disney President and CEO Bob Iger.  “Great stories are at the heart of all we do at The Walt Disney Company and we are pleased that the next chapter in this inspirational story is taking place at Walt Disney World Resort.”

Nearly 160 Chileans arrived last week at the Orlando International Airport. As they arrived aboard Copa Airlines, they received a ceremonial “water salute” as their plane arrived on the tarmac. Local firefighter trucks sprayed an arch of water above the plane as it landed below.

The 31 (out of 33) Chilean Miners who visited Florida this week enjoyed a long weekend filled with shopping, thrill rides, character hugs, and VIP treatment at all four of Disney World’s theme parks. Their arrival included a welcome party on Friday at the American Adventure Pavilion in Epcot.

Here are some photos of their visit to Walt Disney World:

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On Monday, the miners shared their hopes, courage, and pride with 40 children from a local Boys & Girls Club.

“We are not the heroes,” said Omar Reygada, one of the miners whose comments were translated from Spanish.  “Our families and all the people around the world who prayed, wished us well and helped us through our ordeal – those are our real heroes.”

The miners will also receive a group photo in front of Cinderalla’s Castle and personal photo albums of their visit to Disney World. The miners will be returning home on February 2.