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Enlighten Me: Local coach leads First State contingent to Special Olympics World Games

Special Olympics of Delaware
Volunteer coach Mary Moore (far right) joins Delaware's World Games athletes Forrie Brown, Danny Yonker, Robin Long, and Ginny Shaud (left to right)

Athletes from across the globe are heading to the Special Olympics World Games in Los Angeles this month, including several from Delaware.

Alternating between Summer and Winter sports, the games promote equality, acceptance and inclusion for people with intellectual disabilities around the world.

Four First State Special Olympians will be making the trip. Joining them will be a law enforcement representative participating as a runner in the final leg of the Olympic torch run and coach Mary Moore of Wilmington.

Moore is a longtime Special Olympics Delaware volunteer. She helped coach Team USA in Athens Greece in 2011 and was inducted into the Special Olympics Delaware Hall of Fame in 1998. She says experiencing the athletes excitement is rewarding.

“Watching their eyes when they’re competing. It’s not even just the awards. The awards are great but the experience they all enjoy, just seeing some things for the first time,” she says of coaching past games.  “They’re so excited that everyone is looking at them. They’re proud that they’re representing the United States.”

The event will feature 25 Olympic-style sports in venues throughout Los Angeles.   The Opening Ceremony takes place July 25, in the historic LA Memorial Coliseum, site of the 1932 and 1984 Olympic Games and will feature 7,000 athletes and 3,000 coaches representing 177 countries.

Moore says she’s looking forward to the Opening Ceremony.

“There’s so many people, the coliseum will be loaded in L.A and all the people screaming and all the teams marching in,”she says. “It takes an hour to all march in because there’s so many people from different countries. It’s really exciting.”


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