Local special olympians compete at GHS

Published 3:00 am Friday, April 27, 2018

No amount of rain could have dampened the spirits of the local kids competing in the special Olympics at Goshen High School Thursday morning.

The event did have to be moved indoors, but coordinator Kim Faulkner said the kids had a great time despite the weather.

“It gives them an opportunity they may not get anywhere else within their schools,” Faulkner said. “They may not always get to be included in extracurricular activities based on their abilities and what their needs are. The volunteers know how important it is to put these children on a pedestal and have support.”

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Brooke Murphy said her son Lane, who has high-functioning autism, was excited to participate in the competition.

“He had a great time today,” Murphy said. “It’s just a fun day, a good time and good fellowship for everyone. Kids with special needs don’t always get to participate in a lot of things like other kids do. Days like today gives them a chance to get out there and experience relay activities they wouldn’t normally get to do at school.”

Faulkner said she and her daughter, Carla, GHS Assistant Principal Tony May and Anna Grace Thomas decided to hold the event for special needs students from local schools and adults in the community about two weeks ago ahead of the state games at Troy University in May.

“We decided this year to bring it locally at my alma mater,” Faulkner said.

Contests at the special Olympic games included the 10 meter walk, 25 meter and 50 meter run, softball throw and tennis ball throw and many other activities for athletes to participate in between events.

Faulkner thanked Troy Bank and Trust for providing “goody bags” including cups and pencils for the athletes and the student volunteers at GHS that helped throughout the event.

The Pike County team will be participating in opening ceremonies for the state games May 18 at Trojan Arena.