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Not even the wind and cold could slow down athletes at the 24th annual Gaither Stampede as more than 400 Special Olympians came together to participate in a variety of sports competitions.
“It really is terrific that we have been able to create an event that so many students look forward to each year,” said Thomas Morrill, Gaither High’s principal.
The popular “Parade of Flags” kicked things off by introducing each of the 20 schools represented. The Opening Ceremonies concluded with the athletes reading the Special Olympics motto together: “Let me win, but if I cannot win, let me be brave in the attempt.”
“This event is a perfect demonstration that all of our students have incredible talents,” said Superintendent Jeff Eakins. “It’s also wonderful to see the pride these student volunteers take throughout the day.”
Gaither students were paired with a “buddy” who guided them throughout activities such as the long jump and the hammer throw. When they weren’t competing, the Special Olympians participated in dances and received metals from the Rough Riders.
“I love the support we receive from our entire community,” said Mr. Morrill. “Win or lose, the participants will remember this day for the rest of their lives!”