Staff to represent Allegany, Montgomery, Howard and Frederick Counties.
After months of preparation, 2 athletes, one coach and one staff member from Special Olympics Maryland will finally be on their way to the 2013 Special Olympics World Winter Games in the Republic Korea. The team has one last stop though: all 213 members of Special Olympics Team USA will gather in Los Angeles on Thursday, January 24 for a special send-off ceremony at 7 p.m. PT at the Crowne Plaza in Los Angeles before leaving for Korea Friday, January 25.
Amongst the dignitaries joining the team for the send-off celebration will be two-time US Olympic gold medalist and soccer legend Julie Foudy, and Special Olympics Southern California Co-founder and two-time US Olympic decathlon gold medalist, Rafer Johnson.
The 2013 Special Olympics World Winter Games take place January 29-February. Special Olympics Team USA is comprised of 152 athletes and 61 volunteer coaches/staff members from throughout the United States. The athletes are competing in alpine skiing (43 athletes), cross country skiing (27 athletes), snowboarding (9 athletes), snowshoeing (17 athletes), speed skating (11 athletes), figure skating (11 athletes), floor hockey (24 athletes and 10 unified partners).
In the heart of the competition will be the following athletes, coach and staff member
Jake Reynolds from Cumberland, Maryland will compete in Alpine Skiing.
Jill Durbin from Rockville, MD will compete in Snowshoe
Diane Mikulis from Ellicott City, MD will be a coach for Alpine Skiing
Jason Schriml from Frederick, MD will be Assistant Head of Delegation for Team USA.
"The citizens and games organizing committee in the Republic of Korea are excited to host this great competition and put on display the world class venues for each of the 7 winter sports", said Jason Schriml from Special Olympics Maryland, "Our athletes from Maryland are equally excited to put their training to the test against some of the best athletes from different countries around the globe."
This is the 10th Special Olympics World Winter Games. It will unite more than 2,400 athletes from more than 110 countries in PyeongChang and Gangneung, South Korea. 15,000 family, friends, volunteers and spectators are expected to attend.
Special Olympics Team USA is sponsored by Finish Line, Karbon, MTM Recognition, and American Federation of Teachers.