Editor’s note: The Walt Disney Company, ESPN and Special Olympics are teaming up for a new global initiative, announced today in conjunction with ESPN’s 34th anniversary during a celebration at ESPN’s main campus in Bristol, Conn. The celebration includes three Special Olympics Unified Sports competitions running concurrently on ESPN’s campus: basketball, flag football and soccer. SportsCenter anchor and NFL Live host Trey Wingo, an advocate of Special Olympics, shares his perspective with Front Row.
I think everyone needs to have something to inspire them, and to aspire to. For a segment of the population, the Special Olympics fills both of those needs.
Society benefits when we care for our communities’ most vulnerable and proactively search for the forgotten. The looks on athletes’ faces when they accomplish something they never thought possible is priceless. We see so much of that in the Special Olympics.
I’ve been involved with Special Olympics and Unified Sports here in Connecticut for the past seven years or so. It’s been my honor to serve as master of ceremonies at Unified Sports Days as well as speak at several Special Olympic banquets over the years.
I’ve made sure that my son – who is now a college football player – has gone with me on several occasions to understand the importance of accomplishments not just at the elite level, but for everyone.
Through those visits he has become a better leader and an engaged citizen of his community. The idea of competition and achievement is most important for those who have challenges. Through Special Olympics those feelings can be seen in abundance, especially when you see that look on an athlete’s face.