Oxton House Publishers, LLC


Legacy of the Blue Heron


6"×9" paperback

190 pages



6 tape cassettes

unabridged (6½ hrs)

“Harry Sylvester tells the remarkable story of the decade when he struggled with the faceless dragon of Learning Disabilities... It is a story of victories and losses, triumphs and defeats, hope and despair, ... a story experienced by every person with a learning disability... and one that should be heard by every parent and teacher who strives to understand.”

Rick Lavoie, M.A., M.Ed.

A chance encounter with an unfortunate bird provides the spring-board for this author’s reflections on confronting and conquering his learning disabilities.  After an ultimately successful career, he shared his inspiring, informative, gentle, persuasive story in

 Sylvester’s book is a story of persistence in the face of misunderstanding, a story of survival by patient perseverance through years of puzzlement and frustration, and much more.  He shares with us many lessons he learned the hard way, during the years in which our society was discovering what learning disabilities are.  In so doing, he offers to spare us some of the deep individual and social pain that misunderstanding inflicts, if only we will truly hear his story.  With uncommon common sense, he lays out coping tactics for the estimated 10% of us who have learning disabilities and describes productive strategies for the people and social agencies that interact with them.

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Legacy of the Blue Heron:

Living with Learning Disabilities

by Harry Sylvester

Learning Disabilities (LD) is the largest category of disabilities in U.S. schools.  The individual and social implications of those disabilities — and the varied abilities that often accompany them — are often poorly understood by those who do not have learning disabilities, as well as by those who do.  Legacy of the Blue Heron is a uniquely enlightening, entertaining, moving introduction to LD.

This book is a “must read” for teachers, school administrators, school board members, law enforcement officers, corrections officials, judges, and social service workers of all sorts.  It is a “should read” for all of us because we will all, at some time, connect with a person who has learning disabilities.

Harry Sylvester started life as a child with severe learning disabilities from a small town in western Maine. Retired after a successful career as a mechanical engineer, businessman, boat-builder, and president of the Learning Disabilities Association of America,  he still had the same disabilities with which he began the first grade.   From his experiences, he offers wise advice for dealing with many of the problems faced by students, parents, working adults, and educators.  The library journal CHOICE says,

“This book is a must-read for those who want to rely on ‘more than numbers’ to see that children and adults with severe reading problems can be successful.”

“Sylvester’s struggles, defeats and finally, life success are treated with candor and humor and are an inspiration to all who have or work with those who have learning disabilities.  Bravo Harry!”

Dr. Mark Griffin, Headmaster, Eagle Hill School, Greenwich, CT

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