CLERMONT, Fla. – Each year, over 5,000 officers carry the torch on a 1,500-mile relay run throughout 67 counties in Florida. On Tuesday, it was Lake County’s turn.
Maryann Gonzalez could not hold her excitement to see all the men and women in blue participating in this year’s Special Olympics Torch Run.
Gonzalez is the sports coordinator at the Special Olympics Florida Headquarters in Clermont.
“It’s all about the torch run and raising money for the Special Olympics to make an inclusion for Special Olympics for the athletes to take them to wide world of sports,” Gonzalez said.
Workers and officers from Eustis, Clermont, Mount Dora police departments attended on Tuesday as well as deputies from the Lake County Sheriff’s Office.
“The goal is to not only raise important funds throughout the year to support the amazing programs for athletes but also drive awareness in the community about the importance of inclusion and the abilities of our athletes,” Sherry Wheelock with Special Olympics Florida said.
Erica Stamborski works at the sheriff’s office and has been supporting Special Olympics athletes for years.
“I just love seeing everyone being able to participate. Doesn’t matter who you are, what you have going on, we can all be here together and celebrate each other,” Stamborski said.
Special Olympics Florida Fall Games are set to take place Nov. 13 at the ESPN Wide World of Sports.
The Special Olympics Summer Games takes place June 5-12, 2022.