Students at schools within the Bellefonte Area School District participated on April 11 at the Special Olympics of Centre County Geri Ryan Track Meet held at the Penn State multi-sport complex. This was the 27th annual event.
Staff and student coaches worked with the participants throughout the year to prepare for events such as the 25-, 50-, 100- and 200-meter walk races. Other events included the standing long jump and softball throw. Each student could be a part of three events.
And leading up to the meet, schools in the district held sendoff parades in the buildings for the athletes. Bellefonte Elementary School even had its elementary band perform.
“The athletes could not have been more excited about their sendoff and continued to smile until we got the event,” said social studies teacher Mike Maney who was filling in for life skills teacher Rachael Davis.
Senior life skills student Micah Heckathorn had the privilege of carrying the torch for the opening ceremony. That was followed by a recital of the oath, "Let me win. But if I cannot win, let me be brave in the attempt,” which Maney said was fulfilled by all the athletes from Bellefonte Area School District.
High school athlete results
- Heckthorne: Gold in the 50-meter walk and silver in the 25-meter walk
- Adam Marchini: Fourth-place in the 50- and 200-meter runs
- Ashley Harter: Bronze in the 50-meter run and fifth-place in the 200-meter run
- Hunter Sell: Gold in the 400-meter run and bronze in the 200-meter run
- Kenny Russo: Gold in the 25-meter walk and silver in the 50-meter walk
Those who participated from Bellefonte Area Middle School were: Chase Bailey, Zayne Bailey, Brittany Butts, Braiden Buerk, Eden Guizar, Deineira Hernandez-Demenech, Nathan Jewell, Amber Keith, Zoey Nichols, Dori Russo, Alexa Steiner and Natalie Sim. Those elementary school participants were: Hank Miller, Brayden Spicer, Conner Bartley, Jayden Lamey and Jean Dorsainvil from Bellefonte Elementary School.