Special Olympics Texas Tyler Rose Delegation hosts basketball co - KLTV.com - Tyler, Longview, Jacksonville |ETX News

Special Olympics Texas Tyler Rose Delegation hosts basketball competition

Special Olympics Texas is a statewide organization that practices year 'round training and athletic competition in a variety of Olympic-type sports for those with various disabilities.

Monday night, the Special Olympics Texas Tyler Rose Delegation hosted an event at Grace Community School.

“If we can just touch one life, we are doing what we are supposed to be doing,” head of Tyler Rose Delegation Marianne Packard said.  

For 18 years the Grace Community School and the Special Olympics Texas Tyler Rose Delegation have teamed up to make for an incredible night.

“This is a showcase, so we get to show our athletes and what they’ve been working towards,” Special Olympics Texas volunteer coach Will Jones said. “It’s not just a straight competition, it’s something to where people can come and see how hard they’ve worked and have a little fun with it. Something like this is really great with the community.”    

The competition featured a variety of basketball events.

“We have individual skills, we have team skills, and then we have even modified skills for the ones in wheelchairs,” Packard said.

A volunteer for almost nine years, Jones said he comes back every year for one reason.

“For the joy we get out of it,” Jones said. “I like how happy the athletes are, it's like the rawest form of happiness that you could have.”  

And basketball isn’t the only sport the Tyler Rose Delegation sponsors. They also offer bowling, aquatics, track and field and so much more, taking the time to modify each sport so all athletes can compete at their comfort level.

“It’s like maybe five, six, seven weeks total and from the time we start every single year, it’s always an improvement it’s really great,” Jones said.

Packard said getting a chance to see the change within each athlete everyday is unforgettable.

“What it does to your heart is just a lifelong priceless experience.”

If you would like to volunteer with the Special Olympics Texas Tyler Rose Delegation, you can find more information on their Facebook page.

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