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Special Olympics Held at Colleton County Middle School

On Thursday November 2nd, Special Olympics was held at the Colleton County Middle School track and the weather finally cooperated for a spectacular event. With the event generally being held in the Spring, rescheduling was set for Fall after being cancelled twice due to rain. The event kicked off with the parade of athletes and the lighting of the torch by law enforcement. The Ambassador for this year’s event was Tylesha Phoenix, who is a 6 year old student at Black Street Early Childhood Center. According to the Special Olympics program, Phoenix has overcome several obstacles and brings joy to everyone she meets. Black Street Early Childhood Center had several Pre-K students, along with Phoenix, who participated. Elementary schools who had students that participated were Cottageville Elementary School, Forest Hills Elementary School, Hendersonville Elementary School, Northside Elementary School, and Bells Elementary School. Colleton County Middle School and Colleton County High School also had several students who participated.

The adult division for the Special Olympics included athletes from Colleton County and Hampton County. According to Special Olympics Coordinator Rebecca Hooker, “We had around 275 athletes participating, and 80 student volunteers.” This years Hall of Fame Inductee was Robert “Bobby” Walchak, who has been competing at the Special Olympics since he was 8 years old. Walchak has also competed in the State Special Olympics and has won several gold and silver medals in running events. Events held during the event included 100 meter wheelchair and 100 meter dash, standing long jump, running long jump, 50 meter dash, 50 meter walk, softball throw, and tennis ball throw. “The games were a great success thanks to so many people helping,” Hooker said “There were also many community volunteers present, and we were so grateful for the beautiful weather! Athletes and volunteers enjoyed face painting, a carnival with games, music by Debi Price, and an inflatable slide while waiting for their next events. The Special Olympics committee looks forward to continuing to promote unity and inclusion while celebrating the many gifts, talents, and abilities of everyone in our community!”

Amye Stivender (218 Posts)