Stories about our Athletes

Stories about our athletes in words, videos and slideshows.

November 18, 2013

Confidence in Sports and Life

“I feel stronger. I can run faster. I can do it on my own and I never give up.” This is what Special Olympics athlete Molly Hincka will tell you is the secret to her confidence, her training and joy of running.

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October 22, 2011

Fists Held High In Joy

The convivial atmosphere of the World Games was a catalyst for Mio Osato to blossom, and gave her father a new dream.

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October 22, 2011

Meet Mario

At the end of February, our newest public service announcement "Skeleton" was launched as a part of our ongoing 'Be A Fan' campaign. The basketball-themed PSA encourages viewers to get past first impressions and see Special Olympics athletes for what they are: athletes.

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August 31, 2011

Rolling with Finesse: Sunita Suryavanshi

Rolling along to a Gold medal, Sunita Suryavanshi was part of the 24-strong roller skating team from India competing in Athens, Greece, at the World Summer Games. Four years of training paid dividends in a Gold medal finish in the 2X200M Relay, and a fourth place in the individual 100M and 300M Race.

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August 31, 2011

View from the Top

Special Olympics celebrates Singapore athlete Salihin bin Sinai’s ascent of Mount Kilimanjaro.

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July 01, 2011

Anca's Winning Shot

Anca Chirita’s journey to the Special Olympics World Games was a long one. The 20-year-old Romanian bocce player was abandoned to an institution at the age of three, and was shifted among various institutions every couple of years after that.

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July 01, 2011

A Swimmer's Quest to Defy Expectations

Melissa, a 28-year-old swimmer from the Matanuska Valley in Alaska, has spent much of 2011 training toward her goal of getting “all golds” at her first World Games. A swimmer from Alaska may seem a bit unusual, but Melissa makes a habit of defying expectations.

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May 31, 2011

Brother-Sister Youth Partners

Sarah and Ben are not just siblings, they’re a team. In June, they head to the Global Youth Activation Summit in Athens from Colorado, where they lead Project Unify® at their school and are working to expand youth involvement in Special Olympics Colorado.

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May 19, 2011

Eyes on the Prize

Karen Dickerson says she's most at home when her running shoes are pounding the pavement. Six days a week, several miles a day, all year long.  She's always trying to improve -- her time, her form, her endurance.

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May 18, 2011

Special Olympics is My Life

Even before he got involved with Special Olympics, Ted realized the importance of participating in sports and he was there to help and encourage the athletes.

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May 12, 2011

Coming into Focus

Special Olympics has helped Emilda Soriano gain focus, build strength and develop confidence. Now, Emilda is applying these valuable skills in her daily life.

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April 20, 2011

A World of Opportunities

Doctors said Lani is “never going to achieve anything.”  She defies their low expectations every day. She is a graceful gymnast and leads by example, mentoring other athletes.

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April 20, 2011

A Life in Balance

Michael Abraham has been in Special Olympics for nearly two decades, and it has helped him build strength, make friends, learn responsibility and develop confidence. Now, Michael applies these skills in his daily life and at work.

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April 01, 2011

Joshua's Journey of Discovery

Joshua Powell is on an exciting journey of discovery. A recent arrival in China, Powell grew up in Colorado where he got involved with sports as a Special Olympics athlete at the age of 7. He's now learning Chinese and helping younger people in China with intellectual disabilities. He wrote this narrative of his adventure so far.

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March 23, 2011

Fierce Competitor

Kayla McKeon has been in Special Olympics for a decade, and it has helped her build strength, make friends, learn responsibility and develop confidence. Now, Kayla applies these skills in her daily life and in college.

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March 23, 2011

Hometown Champions

Meet Melissa, Scott, and Christopher – their stories are testaments to the power of sport.

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February 16, 2011

Future Full of Hope

At birth, Deon Namiseb was all but discarded but Special Olympics gave him a chance and hope. Today Deon is an accomplished athlete and a role model.

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January 18, 2011

A Family Affair, the Keiths

Kathy and Doug Keith were warned that their son Jimmy, diagnosed with Down syndrome, may not have the same physical abilities as his twin sister. Keiths were determined that Jimmy would have opportunities to play sports. Today, the entire family is involved, cheering at events, playing sports, raising funds to support athletes like their son, coaching, and even starting a basketball program

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December 07, 2010

Making Their Dreams Come True

Special Olympics and sports training has given Lin a life we only dreamed she could have.

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November 16, 2010

The Power of Persistence

To get where he is today, Special Olympics power lifter David Hill has moved mountains – or at least his mom thinks so. 

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August 17, 2010

Special Olympics Helps Athlete Lose 150 lbs to Win Gold

Special Olympics rhythmic gymnast Sara Abbott is accustomed to beating the odds. When she was an infant, doctors said she would never walk or talk; she was not supposed to live past the age of 30; and three years ago, she weighed well over 300 pounds.

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June 21, 2010

Millett to Represent USA at "Special Olympics Unity Cup"

One of the 16 Special Olympics athletes selected for the first-ever, Special Olympics Unity Cup Presented by Coca-Cola is Matthew Millett from South Grafton, Massachusetts, who will be representing the United States.

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May 17, 2010

The Dream Team

Sport: South Carolina Unified Soccer Team; “The Dream Team”
Delegation: South Carolina
Achievement: Earned a bronze medal while competing in the highest unified division of the 2009 SC State Fall Games.

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March 18, 2010

The Heros of Juarez

Last month, the island of Puerto Rico hosted an historic event for the Special Olympics movement – the 2010 Special Olympics Latin America Regional Games. Uniting more than 1,000 athletes from 33 nations through Latin America and the Caribbean, these Games marketed the beginning of a legacy for the region.

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January 27, 2010

Broadening the Depths of Opportunity

Thousands of miles away from the warm water temperatures of his home in the Cayman Islands, Andrew Smilley was about to join 800 swimmers, including five fellow Special Olympic athletes, in one of the most challenging Open Water Swims in the world, the RCP Tiburon Mile.

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Videos and Photos

DifferentBarry Cairns tells what it's like to be a Special Olympics athlete.Watch Video »


Videos and Photos

SpeechlessSpecial Olympics changed her life in deep and meaningful ways.Watch Video »


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Summer GamesAround the world, months of practice are paying off.See Slideshow »


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Photos on FBSee photos and comments from our supporters around the world.See Photos »


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Hope in HaitiLeo and Gedeon play in makeshift fields, tent towns, wherever they can.Watch Video »


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Finding His VoiceDavid Egan has always dreamed big. Now look at him!Learn More »


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Sport Teaches UsOur life-changing work is fueled by the power of sport.Watch Video »


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Making SuccessDoctors said Lani is “never going to achieve anything.” Learn More »


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Very Very SpecialMusic helps Special Olympics make an impact worldwide.See Slideshow »


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Around The WorldGreat photos of Special Olympics events and people.See Slideshow »


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Focus on ChangeWhat we do can't be done without our partners.See Slideshow »


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Power of SportsSports are a powerful way to change our athlete’s lives.See Slideshow »


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What We DoSports, health, education, community and more.See Slideshow »


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Who We AreWe are athletes, families, celebs, volunteers and more.See Slideshow »


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Summer SportsOur athletes run, jump, swim and score in summer.See Slideshow »


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Playing UnifiedUnified Sports reveals strengths in every team member.Watch Video »


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Healthier AthletesOur free health clinics are making a huge difference.Watch Video »


Videos and Photos

Deon NamisebHe's a speaker and role model. It didn't start that way in Namibia.Learn More »


Special Olympics Blog

Health Needs Need Closer Examination

"You can't compete if your feet hurt, if your teeth hurt or if your ears ache."read more »

Posted on 2014-04-07 by Ryan

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