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December 19, 2013 | North America: Ohio

We Are the Champions!

By Sean Moore

My daughter, Erin Moore is an exceptional athlete, she also happens to have Down Syndrome.This past weekend, Dec 14-15, Erin and her teammates Kimberly Kovanda, Katie Kozicki and Colleen Langley represented Westerville, OH Special Olympics in the OH State Swimming competition. Their last event was the 4 x 25 relay. Our friend Ed Zirkle, a photo journalist, was there with his camera to capture the excitement. Erin was the first leg of the relay and as she sat on the edge of the pool, waving to the crowd, waiting to start, she looked over at our friend, smiled and said "I love you Ed," and with that she was off. She sprinted down her lane faster than she had ever swam before, a personal best in our mind. As her mom and I were cheering her on, we realized she was at least 3 body lengths in front of everyone else. Her teammates pressed on and came away with an astounding gold medal. The joy and exuberance expressed by those 4 athletes left tears in the eyes of all the watching parents.

About Sean Moore: I am a coach and board member for the Westerville, OH Special Olympics program. I coach bowling, basketball, volleyball and softball and am lucky to watch my daughter, Erin, compete in these sports as well as soccer, swimming and far.

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