Special Olympic athletes deal with disappointment of missing out on Special Olympic Games
OREGON - Just because the Special Olympics in Oregon have been suspended for the year doesn't mean that the games have stopped locally.
The state games are where the athletes get to show off the skills that they've been practicing all year. However, that's just one opportunity for the athletes to compete, because many other games happen right here in Eugene.
Passion is the foundation for the athletes in the Special Olympics.
Softball coach Daren Kendrick says that their passion is why they keep playing, despite not competing in this year's state games.
"You know, it's a disappointment, but it's not going to change anything that we do as far as training with them," said Kendrick.
Kendrick's team just won third place in the regional games, but it's not just his team that's still playing.
"It being canceled doesn't mean that any of the athletes are missing out on their local training," said Tiffany Monroe, with the Springfield Police Department. "They're still getting to do that, they're still getting their regional competitions."
All sports are still competing locally, and Moore says that the nearly 40-year-old Law Enforcement Torch Run will continue its legacy with the athletes to raise enough money for every athlete to play without a cost.
"They don't pay for their equipment, their uniforms or their travel expenses," said Moore.
There's also going to be 44 athletes from Oregon going up to Seattle on July 1st for the USA Special Olympic Games, so there will continue to be games both in Eugene and Seattle.