Famous Persons With Communication Disorders

It is not impossible for our students with Communication Disabilities to succeed in a verbal world. The following list was derived from a site devoted to successful, famous persons who have various disabilities. It is important for our students to know that they can pursue their dreams and that there are others who have come before them.

CAPOTE Truman, 1924-1984, (communication disorder),
Author of Breakfast at Tiffany's filmed 1961. American writer who made an impressive literary debut at 24 with his novel Other Voices Other Rooms

CONDON Richard, 1915-1996, (speech impairment),
American author who wrote The Manchurian Candidate 1959, Prizzi's Honor 1982

DAVIES Marion, 1897-1061, (speech impairment),
Early 20th century American silent movie actress who successfully made the transition to talkies despite her stuttering. Long-time companion of publisher William Randolph Hearst.

MERRILL Robert 1919-present, (speech impairment),
American baritone, became one of the world’s leading opera stars. Gained recognition for his powerful and resonant voice, which he combined with great warmth and superb technique despite his stuttering while speaking. First to sing 500 performances at New York Met., 1973.

MONROE Marilyn [Norma Jean Mortenson], 1926-1962, (speech impairment),
American actress. Ultimate pin-up girl and cult figure. Starred in Some Like It Hot 1959, Bus Stop 1956. She also stuttered.

REILLY Charles Nelson, 1931-present, (speech impairment),
American comedian, won Tony for How to Succeed in Business Without Really Trying 1961, television game shows, situation comedies and varieties.

ROREM Ned, 1923-present, (speech impairment)
American composer. Won 1976 Pulitzer Prize for Bicentennial Commission, Air Music, published many diaries.

SIMON Carley, 1945-present, (speech impairment),
Multi-faceted singing composer and lyricist. Started singing as a child to help her deal with her stuttering. Song hits include You’re So Vain 1972, Jesse 1980. Grammy Award Winner, 1971.

STEWART James, 1908-1997, (speech impairment),
American actor. Hollywood great, best known for Mr. Smith Goes to Washington 1939, It’s a Wonderful Life 1946.

TILLIS Mel, 1932-present, (speech impairment),
American county music singer and song writer. Includes stuttering problems as part of his act. Has written over 450 songs. CMA entertainer of the Year 1976.

WALTERS Barbara, 1931-present, (speech impairment),
American broadcast journalist. First woman to co-anchor the Today Show 1963-1976. With ABC News since 1976, known for one-on-one interviews, correspondent 20/20 1981, co-host 1984 to present.

WILLIS Bruce, 1955-present, (speech impairment)
American actor with childhood stuttering who played David Addison on television series Moonlighting, 1985-1989, won 1987 Emmy starred in film Die Hard.

For a more extensive list of other famous persons with various disabilities visit, http://www.tampagov.net/dept_Mayor/Mayors_Alliance/famous_persons/references.asp
(The link where the above list was derived).

Posted by Liz McOuat