Single Dad Helps Son With Disability Make History. I’m In Awe Right Now!

ezra roy with his paintings

Ezra Roy is 26 years old and just graduated from Texas Southern University… Magna cum Laude. He also has Down Syndrome. What makes Ezra an exceptional student is his passion and commitment to his special talent – art. That’s where his dad, Alvin Roy comes in.


Alvin knew from the moment Ezra was born that he was different and there would be some challenges ahead, but he chose to never treat his son any differently. Alvin is a seasoned artist, and as Ezra was growing up, he would watch his father paint in awe. Though he’s never been able to speak, the painting, colors, and art forms changed his body language and his nonverbal communication. The Roys had a new way to communicate with each other that was totally unique.

Ezra was very persistent in his desire to attend college, specifically wanting to attend TSU, his father’s alma mater. He took the SATs and got into TSU’s fine arts program at age 21, and not as a special ed student. Ezra put in the time, effort, and commitment to get through his projects and exams, eventually graduating at the top of his class. He’s the first student with Down Syndrome to graduate from TSU without any extra help for his special needs. What an amazing accomplishment!

Alvin proudly displays Ezra’s work in his studio for everyone to see and the two are envisioning future collaborations. When Ezra graduated, the first thing he said was “Dad, we did this!” With love, support, and encouragement, anything is possible.

ezra and alvin roy, artists
Image via Houston Chronicle
ezra roy next to his painting
Image via Royal Grafix
 ezra roy graduation picture
Image via Forward Times Online
ezra roy at college graduation
Image via Houston Chronicle
ezra and alvin roy
Image via Houston Chronicle

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