In January 1986, Troy Barboza was appointed to the Honolulu Police Department as a member of the 92nd Recruit Class, graduating as the top recruit of his class. Troy was introduced to Special Olympics when his Recruit Class ran in the first Law Enforcement Torch Run for Special Olympics Hawai’i. Troy immediately knew he wanted to do more so he stepped up and became an assistant coach in basketball and soccer. Troy loved sharing his time and talents with the athletes and spent much of his off-duty time working hard to improve their lives both on and off the playing field.
Tragically, Troy was killed in the line of duty in October 1987, in retaliation for a drug arrest that he made the previous summer. To honor Troy and all that he did, Special Olympics Hawai’i, with the permission of his family, officially re-named the torch run. Known today as the first Hawaiian Bank Troy Barboza Law Enforcement Torch Run for Special Olympics Hawai’i, this is the only torch run in the world to be named after a fallen officer.
22 October marked 33 years since Officer Troy Barboza was murdered in his own home, but his legacy will live on forever. The following crime documentary outlines his life, involvement with Special Olympics, and a promising career with the Honolulu Police Department that was cut tragically short. Click here to watch.
Kevin Brown Goes Above and Beyond
Kevin Brown has overcomejust about every obstacle put in front of him. He’s never let failure or people giving him a hard time stop him from doing what he loves. But most of all, he puts others first, leads by example and goes above and beyond, even in these uncertain times.
As the second and final stage of the Special Olympics World Winter Games Kazan 2022 logo contest kicks off, three ideas proposed by the first stage winners will be used as blueprints to create the final emblem. Igor Gorelyshev (Moscow), Valery Sazonov (Samara), and Nyaz Hayrullin (Kazan) submitted the winning ideas and will share the prize money equally. In phase one, Russian citizens were invited to design and submit a logo representing sport, inclusion, and Russian culture.
Additionally, an entry by Alexander Gustyakov (Vladimir Oblast) who lives in a group home for people with intellectual disabilities received a special award for his submission. “My moto is ‘I’ll do it!’” Alexander wrote in his application, “I wanted to express my love to Special Olympics through my idea and thank them for their support in raising interest to sports among people with intellectual disabilities. This helps to overcome life challenges, strive for victory.” Click here to read more.
How Special Olympics Athlete Niall Guite Drew the Attention of Manchester City and Beyond
Since March, Niall Guite has used up a box of 150 felt-tip pens. Twice. He's also burned through a 36-pack of colored pencils -- twice -- and purchased enough poster board to wallpaper his bedroom. Niall and his mother, Michelle Guite, have learned that it's best to buy in bulk.
When the world shut down and sporting events were canceled because of the coronavirus pandemic, nonprofit organizations, including Special Olympics -- a global sports organization for athletes with intellectual disabilities -- started looking for innovative ways to raise money. In the U.K., organizers of the London Marathon, which was postponed in April and is one of the world's largest single-day fundraising events, started the 2.6 Challenge to raise money for British charities. That's when Niall, a Special Olympics gold medalist himself, had an idea.
The devout Sheffield Wednesday fan would draw 26 renderings of U.K. football stadiums -- he has visited 67 of them, after all -- from his now-signature aerial perspective. He would then sell them through the JustGiving site in hopes of raising £260, allowing people to choose the donation amount -- as long as it was a variation of 2.6, a play on the 2.6 Challenge. Twenty-six pounds, £126 and so on. The money would go to Special Olympics Great Britain, where he competes and sits on its Athlete Leadership Team, a committee that helps shape how the organization serves its athletes. He reached his goal within one month -- and the orders continued to come in. So too did the accolades. Click here to read more.
Jamie Foxx Learned 'How to Live' from Sister, a Special Olympics Athlete
Special Olympics extends condolences to actor and singer Jamie Foxx after the death of his sister DeOndra Dixon, who was aSpecial Olympics Texasathlete before joining her brother in California. He announced her passing on 26 October, 2020. She was 36-years-old. Our thoughts are with her family and loved ones during this difficult time.
DeOndra Dixon was known as an accomplished dancer, public speaker and longtime Special Olympics athlete.
She was also an advocate for people with intellectual disabilities who inspired everyone she met, especially her Oscar-winning brother, Jamie Foxx. Click here to read more.
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