On the heels of the fascinating Disneyland related Walter Bosley podcast here at THC, I thought it an opportune time to share an article I wrote over 20 years for a ‘zine called INFOCULT, which also appears in The Beast of Adam Gorightly: Collected Rantings. (1992-2004)
The Disneyland Dead
According to sources inside the Magic Kingdom, there have been 17 deaths in the park since it first opened over 45 years ago. My source–a mid level Disney employee–informs me that only one of these 17 deaths was that of a Disneyland cast member. The other 16 fatalities were those of innocent people visiting the park, looking forward to a day of fun and frolic, and instead finding only death and dismemberment at the hands of Uncle Walt’s magical killing machines.
My source, whom I will call “The Conductor,” has been employed by the Disney Corporation for just under two years, so his knowledge of all the Disneyland deaths and their subsequent cover-ups is somewhat limited. From “The Conductor”–after plying him with alcohol one night–I garnered knowledge of three of these horrifying deaths, the most infamous being the horrid accident which befell the aforementioned cast member. Her name I have been unable to secure. But to all Disneyland employees aware of her gruesome story, she will be known forever as The Squish Girl.
The Squish Girl was an operator for the now defunct ride “America Sings!” This ride, which is still in operation at Florida’s Disney World, featured, among others, characters from the Brer Rabbit story. (These very same characters were removed from the ride after its closure. They can now be found in the most recent addition to Disneyland, Splash Mountain, singing their same insipid song, with the blood of The Squish Girl still upon their animated paws.) For some unknown reason, The Squish Girl did a big unexplained no-no. She stepped off the operator’s chair as the ride was going and became horribly entrapped between two moving objects. I guess you can figure out how she got her name. The section of Tomorrowland that housed “America Sings!” is now used exclusively by Disney employees for training and other purposes. Still, mysteriously, The Squish Girl’s spirit is said to wander there. Often, in the dead of night, the lights in this building have been know to go off and on for no apparent reason. Some employees say it is The Squish Girl trying to contact them.
But if any attraction in Disneyland is haunted, it would probably be the Matterhorn. Like the ferocious Abominable Snowman it houses within, the Matterhorn has swallowed its victim’s whole. And after having devoured their flesh and precious bodily fluids, has spat from it whatever bones and blood that could not be digested.
For anybody who has ever ridden the Matterhorn, it seems as if–as your being propelled through its dark, ominous caverns–your head is barely clearing the rocky walls inside, and you find yourself reflexively ducking as your are sped around treacherous corners on this death-defying roller coaster ride through the mountain. This is, in fact, true, for there is very little clearance between yourself and the walls and overhanging rocks, which you would discover if for some stupid reason you decided to stand up. Unfortunately, some poor soul did just that on one occasion and was instantly decapitated. On another grisly occasion, one of the roller coaster cars broke free of the tracks, and flew hundreds of feet into the air, its hapless occupants plummeting to their untimely deaths in the nearby submarine lagoon.
These are just a few of the Disneyland dead.