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A lad with dyslexia from Kildare drew an excellent portrait of Robin Williams for a lovely reason

The actor showed many people that dyslexia doesn’t have to hold you back in life.

CANNES Williams Source: PA Archive/PA Images

IT’S A LITTLE known fact that legendary Mrs. Doubtfire actor Robin Williams struggled greatly with dyslexia.

He used his famous sense of humour to poke a bit of fun at his condition, joking with Johnny Carson in an interview back in 1981:

I suffer with severe dyslexia. I was the only child on my block on Halloween to go ‘trick or trout’. People’d go ‘Look! Here comes that young Williams boy again! Better get some fish.’

Despite his difficulties with reading, writing and spelling, he excelled at school in other ways. Discovering drama boosted his self confidence, he was on multiple athletic teams and he was elected class president.

A Legendary Evening with Robin Williams, Beverly Hills Source: Dave Starbuck/Geisler-Fotopress

He left acting school in his junior year when a professor said there was ‘nothing left to teach him’ – he was a natural.

The average school curriculum rarely focuses on many talents outside of reading, writing and mathematics.

Because of this, young people who have been diagnosed with conditions like dyslexia (or dyscalculia - which causes difficulty comprehending maths) and people who are unknowingly struggling with these conditions can find themselves discouraged.

Like Robin Williams, 22-year-old Pierce Jones from Kildare discovered that dyslexia doesn’t have to affect your whole life.

21148652_117419848985983_702263510_n 22-year-old Pierce Jones Source: Pierce Jones/Facebook

Pierce is now a self taught charcoal portrait artist, and he dedicated a portrait to Robin Williams who he describes as a ‘brilliant, intelligent person that gave everyone entertainment.’

Williams was never ashamed of being dyslexic and Pierce himself sees the condition as a gift, one that allows him to see the world differently to others.

21148525_117419838985984_640618975_n Source: Pierce Jones/Facebook

From an early age, Pierce’s mother Frances Ward Jones picked up on his difficulty with reading and writing. While he was young she took him for psycho-educational assessment, where he was diagnosed with dyslexia.

21208495_117492618978706_1083299564_n Pierce's mother Frances Ward Jones Source: Pierce Jones/Facebook

Her dedication to helping her son read and write is commendable. She went to college and trained to become a teacher for young people with dyslexia so that she could offer her son the best assistance possible.

Pierce’s mother has clearly helped to shape his outlook with dyslexia in an extremely positive way.

His talent in charcoal portraits isn’t just exclusive to drawing Robin Williams. He has also done some excellent portraits of other well known celebrities.

From Bob Marley:

21208552_117489872312314_217339414_n Source: Pierce Jones/Facebook

To Ray Charles:

21151047_117489792312322_431087398_n Source: Pierce Jones/Facebook

And Eric Clapton:

21209009_117489938978974_398139968_n Source: Pierce Jones/Facebook

Pierce’s story was shared to a Kildare community page on Facebook, and within a few hours 1,500 local people had liked the photo of his portrait and began to share stories about their own children and grandchildren.

Many found Pierce’s story heartwarming and an excellent source of encouragement and inspiration for youngsters who are trying to get to grips with their dyslexia.


Pierce ended his lovely Facebook post with this line:

“Never be ashamed of being dyslexic. It’s a gift.”

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About the author:

Kelly Earley

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