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Mississippi Special Olympics Team returns with over 150 medals

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Special Olympics
Two dozen River City athletes helped the Mississippi team bring home over 150 medals from the Special Olympics USA Games (from VTV broadcast).

Estimated reading time: 2 minutes

Dozens of athletes traveled from Mississippi to compete in the Special Olympics USA Games in Orlando, Fla. and brought home 63 Gold, 51 Silver and 39 Bronze medals.

Special Olympics
Rick Daughtry presented the Mayor and Aldermen with signed softballs from the Special Olympics USA Games (from VTV broadcast).

Director of Parks and Recreation for the City, Rick Daughtry, presented Mayor Flaggs, Alderman Mayfield and Alderman Monsour with signed softballs from the games to commemorate the memorable victories.

“If ya’ll have never been to a Special Olympics event, you have missed out,” Daughtry said. “This was my first USA Games and it was unreal.  If you’ve never watched these kind of athletes work with each other, they’re all winners…they just pull each other on, I’ve never seen anything like it.”

special olympics usa 2022
Sandy Hearn and Pauline Vessel with the River City area athletes as they prepare to leave for Orlando (photo by David Day).

Area assistant director Sandy Hearn said the River City athletes were invited to participate in a tournament in Virginia this fall, but likely won’t be able to make due to a lack of funding.

“We’ve exhausted all our funds on this trip,” Hearn said, with a smile that indicated it was all worth it.

“We’ve got four more years to get ready for the next one!” Daughtry added.

In addition to the 153 medals, Mississippi athletes placed 4th in 22 events, 5th in 21 events, 6th in 5 events, 7th in 7 events and 8th in 11 events.

“We’re good,” an athlete quipped.

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