Lake County first responders run to get results for Special Olympics

The 2022 games will be held at Walt Disney World in June

LAKE COUNTY, Fla. – The Special Olympics torch run started off with cheers and smiles on Thursday.

First responders from all over Lake County gathered again to support athletes participating in this year’s Special Olympics USA Games in June.

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“This event shows that we can have fun but still work hard and help this organization that’s helped us in so many different ways,” Special Olympics athlete Luis Martinez said.

Martinez, 32, said he looks forward to the event every year, and though he can’t run, he has a team of officers who got his back, pushing with passion.

“It’s amazing because I’ve met so many people and I’ve become friends with them over the years and I just love it because they show me and others that they really care,” Martinez said.

The torch is brought in from overseas and passed from each law enforcement agency within Florida and the goal is to promote awareness and raise funds for the Special Olympics and persons with special needs.

“It’s been happening all across the state. We do it in 67 counties with the combination at our summer state games,” Sherry Wheelock with Special Olympics Florida said.

The 2022 Special Olympics USA Games takes place at EPSN Wide World of Sports Complex at Walt Disney World in June.

“You have to stay committed and proud of what you’re doing because that’s all you got,” Martinez said.

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About the Author:

Ezzy Castro is a multimedia journalist on News 6's morning team who has a passion for telling the stories of the people in the Central Florida community. Ezzy worked at WFOR CBS4 in South Florida and KBMT in Beaumont, Texas, where she covered Hurricane Harvey in 2017. Being from Miami, Ezzy loves Cuban coffee and croquetas!