The 14th Special Olympics World Summer Games will be held July 15-Aug. 2 in Los Angeles. More than 7,000 athletes from 177 countries will compete in 25 Olympic-type sports during the Games, according to a Special Olympics Utah news release.
Jesse Eden of Brigham City was one of the athletes selected for the USA team. He has participated in Special Olympics for 13 years, competing in bowling, T-ball, track and field and bocce ball. He will compete in bocce ball at the World Summer Games.
"(I have made) friends that accept and understand me, gained skills that I didn't have before and learned about many disabilities and how others have overcome disabilities," Eden said in a news release. "It feels good to be part of (the World Summer Games) to be a part of something involving many countries."
Cedar City resident Linda Pate will also represent the U.S. and Utah at the World Summer Games. Pate has participated in Special Olympics for three years, competing in snowshoeing, bowling, athletics (track and field) and aquatics. She will compete in athletics at the World Summer Games.
Joyce Reis is also from Brigham City and has participated in Special Olympics Utah for 16 years. Reis competes in bowling, aquatics and bocce ball and has competed in previous National Special Olympics games. She will compete at the World Summer Games in bocce ball.
With an anticipated 30,000 volunteers and 500,000 spectators, the 2015 Special Olympics World Games will be the largest sports and humanitarian event anywhere in the world in 2015, according to the news release.