Fans Find Inspiration in Athletes and Their Dedication to Sports

By Leslie Fisher

July 4, 2018

The Special Olympics USA Games are a celebration of people pursuing their goals, as well as an opportunity to build a community that values people of all abilities. You don’t have to be an athlete to appreciate that message, which is why tens of thousands of people came to support this year’s USA Games.

Laurel Harriet from Bainbridge Island finds the positive atmosphere and the athletes’ dedication inspiring. She was thrilled to find out that this year’s Special Olympics USA Games would be near where she lives. Harriet and her mother, Audrey Lemieux, have wanted to come to the games for a long time.

“It’s a really upbeat thing that we should all be doing,” Harriet said. “We need it!”

Oleg Isakov, a father from Redmond, Washington took his children to the games so they could learn from the Special Olympics athletes’ example. He admires the dedication and hard work the athletes have put-in to be where they are today.

“I came with my kids so they see how people [of all] abilities can pursue their goals,” said Isakov . “I was telling them that it is very important, even if you have some difficulties in life, to just keep trying and pursue your goals.”

Alex Ong has previously enjoyed helping with Special Olympics Southern California. He said it was an honor to support the athletes at the Special Olympics USA Games as a fan.

“I think all those who are involved represent some of the best parts of what makes people, people,” Ong said.