Special Olympics Held

TORCH LIGHTING CEREMONY - The torch lighting ceremoney kicked off the second annual Saluda Special Olympics Fri., April 21. Officers from the Sheriff’s Office and Saluda Police Department ran the torch from town to Saluda HIgh School and after a relay race around track an athlete lit the torch. (Standard-Sentinel photo)

Saluda County Schools Holds
Second Annual Special Olympics

By Mary Alice Quattlebaum

  Saluda County School District held its second annual Special Olympics on Friday, April 21, 2017.     We would like to say a special thank you to everyone who helped share this day this us, and all of the people who helped to make this day a success- sponsors, volunteers, EMS workers, Law Enforcement, committee members, faculty, staff, students, parents, and community members.  A special thank you goes to Candace Herron and Courtney Long, teachers at Saluda Primary School for coordinating this event.
  Because of the generosity of the our community, the event raised approximately $6,250 as well as many other donations such as food drinks, water, hats, art supplies, and balloons.
  The day began with the passing of the torch.  Saluda County Law Enforcement led the event running from the district office out to the Educational Complex handing off the torch.  Dr. David Mathis, Superintendent and State Superintendent Molly Spearman opened the ceremony by welcoming everyone.  Trey Shealy served as the emcee for the event.
  The Saluda High School NJROTC presented the colors.  Cynthia Del’Valle Silverio and Annie Scott led the audience in the Pledge of Allegiance.  Ryan Edwards sang a beautiful acapella rendition of the Star Spangled Banner.  Fulton Winn recited the Special Olympic Oath- “Let me win: But if I cannot win; Let me be brave in the attempt.”
  Our special guest of honor, Sergeant First Class (retired) Todd Reed, from the Wounded Warrior Amputee Softball team was introduced.  While Sergeant Reed was in the U.S. Army on a combat tour in Desert Storm, he stepped on a landmine, causing him to lose his right foot and is now an amputee.  He has earned many awards and decorations and addressed the students and audience that no matter what happens in life, never give up, and let a disability hold you back from doing what you want to do.  His goal was to work with law enforcement and found his dream by working with the Mesa Arizona Police department where he has now retired.
  The torch run around the track was led by local law enforcement, Warrior Todd Reed, and chosen athletes: Hunter Price, Shaniah Tolen, Tyqurious Moore, Hunter Hopkins, Joshua Morris, and Quentin Curry.  Jonathan Mollere from SHS lite the caldron.  Sheriff John Perry officially announced the opening of the games.  Athletes paired up with a “Buddy” from Saluda High School who spent the day with them.   Games, arts and crafts, and final competitions were held. 
  This fun filled day ended with the announcement of awards by Superintendent, Dr. David Mathis, as Sheriff John Perry and Mr. Reed handed out medals and ribbons to all the participants.  Everyone involved had a great time!

SPECIAL OLYMPICS HIGHLIGHTS - Opening ceremony participants.  (District photo)

SPECIAL OLYMPICS HIGHLIGHTS - Awards presentation. (District photo)