Special needs athletes get a big send off

BULLOCH COUNTY, GA. (WSAV) – The Winter Olympics officially start on February 8th, but some Bulloch County kids got their shots at being olympians this weekend.

They are heading to Atlanta for a once in a lifetime opportunity. They’re competing in the Special Olympic’s State Indoor Winter Games. So Statesboro High students and teachers wanted to give them a proper send off.

They lined the parking lot, held pom poms, signs and cheered as they prepared to leave.

“It always brings tears to my eyes to watch these other kids just support our athletes and wish them well and good luck,” said Susan Williams of Bulloch County Schools.

After months of training, they’ll be competing in bowling against other students from across Georgia. For many of them, it’s not only their first time competing, it’s their first time outside county lines.

“Students at the high school often take for granted is, this is their only sport, only recreational opportunities that they have available to them,” says Gavin Culkwood of the Special Olympics for Bulloch County. “So this is everything. This is it all rolled into one experience for these students.”

Although the trip only lasts a few days, they’ll make memories that will last a lifetime.

“It’s a little overwhelming for them because they don’t know what they are prepared for,” says Cindy Thompson of the Special Olympics for Bulloch County. “But once they get there they go to the opening ceremonies tonight and they walk out among thousands of people.”

The games run from January 12th through the 14th. Other events include basketball, floor hockey and powerlifting.

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