A Story of Pierce Brosnan That Shows How a Single Father Managed to Find Happiness Again
The world knew him as James Bond, but behind the success and fame lies a story of tragedy and overcoming obstacles. Pierce Brosnan lost his first wife to cancer but adopted and raised his children alone. Years later, life took his only daughter from him due to the same disease. But fate had a new beginning in store for him.
A tough childhood with a bright future
He was born on May 16, 1953, in Ireland, the son of a 19-year-old girl. His parents separated when he was still a baby and he grew up with his maternal grandparents while his mother worked in London as a nurse. When he was 6 years old, his grandparents passed away, so he lived with different relatives until, at 10, his mother was able to take care of him.
His mother was very supportive of his dream to become an actor. As a young man growing up in Ireland, he loved western movies and cowboys. He joined the Oval House Theatre to get his acting education, and in 1975, he started working as an assistant stage manager.
His first great love
He debuted as an actor in 1980 in the film, The Long Good Friday. That same year, he married his ex-wife, Australian actress, Cassandra Harris, better known as Sandra Colleen Waites. She was 11 years older than him, began her career in 1977, and had 2 children at the time she met Brosnan.
Cassandra and Pierce’s love story
They met in 1974 thanks to her nephew, who was a classmate of Pierce’s at the drama school where he trained. On one occasion, he accompanied him to his aunt’s house, and when he saw her picture he said, “This is your aunt? My God, what a beautiful woman.”
Their first in-person meeting was a few days later, and his admiration was confirmed, “I saw her coming down the stairs and thought, ’What a beautiful woman.’ Not for an instant did I think she was someone I would spend 17 years of my life with. I didn’t think about courting her or trying to court her. I just wanted to enjoy her beauty and who she was.”
The blended family he loved
But mutual attraction led them to become a couple and later, a family. Although he was only 23 at the time when they married, he adopted Cassandra’s children, Charlotte and Christopher, who soon adjusted to their new father, and he didn’t take long to love them as his own: “I didn’t feel like a father, I wasn’t a father. I was just Pierce. And then I became Dad Pierce. And then Dad,” he admitted.
“When I get home from the studio or set, work stays there and life revolves around the kitchen table and what’s going on in our kids’ lives: soccer, homework, planning the next adventure. I get to go home to the most beautiful wife on the planet, lovely kids, a nice normal life, and then I get to run off and play at the movies, in a fantasy world,” he added about his fatherhood.
Later, the couple had their only child together, Sean Brosnan, who also followed in his parents’ footsteps in acting.
The hardest moment of his life
But even the most beautiful stories sometimes have sad moments. For Pierce, that happened in 1991, when Cassandra passed away from ovarian cancer. Years later, in 2013, her daughter, Charlotte, also lost her life to the same disease: “I don’t see the cup half full, believe me [...]. The brooding, Irish black dog sits next to me from time to time,” he admitted, regarding his tragic loss.
“She has made me the man I am, the actor I am, the father I am. She will forever be embedded in every fiber of my being. She is with me every day. It was a blessing to have met someone like that,” he acknowledged in memory of his beloved. But the passing of his wife did not stop him and he carried on for his children, whom he raised and cared for as a single parent.
Life gave him a rematch, and so he started over.
But love knocked on his door again, and the family picture was complete when he met journalist Keely Shaye at a party in Mexico on April 8, 1994. “We sat under the stars and he held my hand. There were fireworks over our heads and Kenny Loggins was singing. We talked until 3 a.m.,” she recounted of their first date, and he added, “I found a great woman in Keely Shaye.” He continued, “Wherever in the world I had to travel, I missed her and sent her tickets to go so we could be together. We just seemed to click.”
They had two children, Dylan, born in 1997, and Paris, who was born in 2001. They decided to say, “I do,” on August 4, 2001. Since then, their love has only grown stronger over the years.
The driving force of his life: his family
Currently, they have been married for 21 years and are one of the most stable couples in Hollywood. On Instagram, they never miss the opportunity to share the moments they live together and acknowledge their anniversaries: “Thank you for bringing so much love and beauty into my life, for making these last 26 years the greatest joy of my life,” he wrote, expressing his love.
Pierce’s story is a true reflection of the fact that after the storm, the sun always rises, and affection for one’s children and partner is a feeling that will never be broken.
What is the most beautiful love story you know?