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Piedmont Brings Home Gold at Special Olympics

Congratulations to Mrs. Oprea’s Transition to Adulthood (TTA) students for representing Piedmont well at the 2015 Special Olympics held at Cuthbertson High School on April 24.  Many athletes won medals and ribbons but it was the fun of competition that was the highlight of the day.  According to principal Jonathan Tyson, “We are so proud of the athletes in Mrs. Oprea’s class for their performances at the Special Olympics and appreciate our student volunteers from Piedmont Serves who assisted at the elementary Special Olympics on April 23.”

Special Olympics is a global movement of people who want to improve the lives of people with intellectual disabilities.  The term ‘intellectual disability’ is used to describe a person with certain limitations in cognitive functioning and other skills, including communication and self-care. These limitations can cause a child or young adult to develop and learn more slowly or differently. Intellectual disability is the most common developmental disability.   Special Olympians from throughout Union County were in attendance at Cuthbertson High School.  Events included were the softball throw, wheelchair races, shot put, and running/walking events. 

There are many volunteers who assist with the Special Olympics, including high school students from various service clubs.  The Piedmont Serves organization had over 30 students help at the elementary Special Olympics.  Faculty advisor Stacey Butera provides background on children with special needs prior to serving at the event, what to expect, and how to best interact with their assigned child.  “It is a great opportunity for our students to give back to the community and be involved in an event that raises their awareness for children with special needs. ” 

Special Olympians who place in the top three receive the traditional Olympic medals of gold, silver, and bronze, while other finishers receive a ribbon.  Below is a list of the awards that Piedmont Olympians brought home:

  • Tyler Lafata - Gold Softball Throw; Silver 50M Dash
  • Hunter Adcock- Gold 50M Wheelchair Race; Ribbon for Softball Throw
  • Natalie Blackburn- Silver Softball Throw; Ribbon 25M Dash
  • Matthew Weilage - Ribbon Softball Throw; Ribbon 25 M Dash
  • Shayna Robinson - Ribbon Softball Throw
  • Peyton Hudson- Ribbon Softball Throw; Ribbon 25 M Dash
  • Sarah Clontz - Ribbon Softball Throw; Ribbon 50 M Dash
  • Noelle Kersey- Ribbon Softball Throw; Ribbon 50M Walk
  • Aimee Danchess- Ribbon Softball Throw; Ribbon 50 M Dash
  • Pauli Vinson- Ribbon Softball Throw; Ribbon 50 M Dash
  • Trevor Chaney- Silver Shot Put; Ribbon 400 m Dash
  • John VanHorne- Ribbon 200M Dash; Ribbon 100M Dash
  • Caleb Chandler- Ribbon 200M Dash; Ribbon 100 M Dash
  • Kristen Cumber - Ribbon Softball Throw; Ribbon 50 M Dash 

It is obvious that Mrs. Oprea’s class has a lot of talented Special Olympians as they brought home many medals and ribbons.  Congratulations once again to our competitors and thanks for representing Piedmont at the 2015 Special Olympics. 

Written by: Donna Helms - Media Specialist
Posted: Apr 28, 2015 by Donna Helms

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