Some famous people with TS or OCD


Dr. Samuel Johnson (1709 – 1784)

Dr. Johnson was a famous British poet, essayist, and lexicographer. He wrote the Dictionary of the English Language and The Lives of the Poets. Dr. Johnson’s unusual movements (most likely tics) and compulsive behaviors were observed by many of his peers at the time and described in such rich detail that there is little doubt that he had Tourette’s Syndrome with obsessive-compulsive features or even
full-blown OCD. Dr. Johnson was also reported to suffer from depression throughout his life.


Jim Eisenreich (1959 – )

Jim is a retired major league baseball player who played with the 1993 National League Pennant winning Philadelphia Phillies and the 1997 World Series champions, the Florida Marlins. Although Jim had had Tourette’s since childhood, he wasn’t diagnosed until he was a baseball player.

Jim donates much of his time to educating the public about Tourette’s and serves as a role model for many children.


Tim Howard (1979 – )

Tim is the goalkeeper for Everton of England and the United States national team. This talented athlete also played in the 2000 Olympics. Tim’s tics and compulsions were evident in elementary school, and school school was rough for him because his classmates teased him and his teachers viewed him as a discipline problem.


Howard Hughes (1905 – 1976)

Howard Hughes’ “eccentricities” were well-known, including a germ obsession that started in
childhood and worsened throughout his adult years. That didn’t stop him, however, from being brilliantly successful in both Hollywood as a film director and producer and in aviation, where he owned a number of airlines, and at one point held a number of air speed records as an aviator.

Summers book cover

Marc Summers (1951 – )

A popular tv host and entertainer, he had struggled since childhood from obsessions and
compulsions, but didn’t know what he had until Dr. Eric Hollander came on his show
as a guest. As Marc listened to him talk about OCD, he realized what he had. His book, Everything in its place, tells his amazing story.


Howie Mandel (1955 – )

Voted one of the 100 best stand-up comedians of all time, Howie Mandel first became known
for his role in the tv series, “St. Elsewhere,” and later for “Bobby’s World.” Plagued by a
long-standing germ obsession, he avoids shaking hands with people and even built a second “sterile” house where he can retreat to if he fears catching germs from anyone — even his family.


Dan Ackroyd (1952 – )

It’s hard to know what accomplishment to mention first with Dan Ackroyd — his performance in The Blues Brothers, his role in Ghost Busters, his comedy in Saturday Night Live, or House of
Blues, where people can hear great blues music. This talented actor, musician, screenwriter, and comedian grew up struggling with symptoms of Tourette’s and Asperger’s Syndrome. You can hear Dan talking about how these conditions affected him in an interview he gave on NPR.


David Beckham (1975 – )

This talented soccer player (“footballer”) from the UK has recently admitted that he struggles with his OCD: “”I’ve got this obsessive compulsive disorder where I have to have everything in a straight line or everything has to be in pairs. I’ll put my Pepsi cans in the fridge and if there’s one too many then I’ll put it in another cupboard somewhere. I’ll go into a hotel room and before I can relax, I have to move all the leaflets and all the books and put them in a drawer. Everything has to be perfect.” (Source – The Independent Online, April 2, 2006).

You may have heard that Mozart had Tourette’s Syndrome, but that claim is somewhat controversial.