• Eunice Kennedy Shriver with her arms around two students in uniforms standing next to a brick wall

    The ESPYS Celebrate Our Founder

    Eunice Kennedy Shriver will receive the Arthur Ashe Courage Award for her work and the creation of Special Olympics.

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Tune In to see Special Olympics Founder Honored at The 2017 ESPYS

Special Olympics Chairman Tim Shriver, one of Eunice Kennedy Shriver's children, will accept the honor on behalf of his mother at The 25th ESPYS Presented by Capital One on Wednesday, 12 July. The show starts at 8 PM Eastern Time.
Eunice Kennedy Shriver watches as a Special Olympics athlete flexes his arm muscle among a group in a stadium
Eunice Kennedy Shriver (front left) was the founder of Special Olympics. This photo was taken at the first International Special Olympics Summer Games in 1968.

Watch the ESPYS

Please tune in Wednesday, 12 July, at 8 PM Eastern Time on ABC for the 25th annual ESPYS. 

Tim Shriver and eight Special Olympics athletes will accept this honor on behalf of Eunice Kennedy Shriver during the awards ceremony. The show will be broadcast live in the United States from Los Angeles, California.

A Visionary and a Revolutionary

"My mother was a visionary, but, more importantly, a revolutionary," said Shriver on behalf of the Shriver family and Special Olympics. 

"Fueled by love and anger, she used sport to break down the barriers, she used fields of play to bring people together, and she opened the doors of inclusion and equality to the most marginalized on Earth. It is now up to all of us to follow the athletes of Special Olympics who can teach us all to accept and include each other." 

The Arthur Ashe Courage Award is sponsored by Cadillac. Learn more about the award.

One of the athletes who will stand with Tim Shriver is Loretta Claiborne of Pennsylvania, who won an ESPY of her own in 1996. Read her comments about the ESPY for Eunice Kennedy Shriver

Another Special Olympics athlete, David Egan of Virginia, also shared what he learned from knowing Mrs. Shriver.

Do you have a story about Mrs. Shriver, or about how her work and legacy have touched you? Please share your story.

Two men stand side by side with an ESPY award between them, surrounded by smiling co-workers in a conference room.
Kester Edwards, left, is one of the Special Olympics athletes around the country receiving local ESPY awards. Special Olympics Chairman Tim Shriver is at right.

Special Olympics Athletes Honored, Too

As part of the 25th annual ESPYS event, Special Olympics athletes around the United States are being honored with local ESPY Awards. These honorees are being recognized by the ESPYS organizers and their Programs as “amazing, inspirational athletes.” Each athlete is receiving a letter of commendation, along with an ESPYS statuette.

Read profiles of the honored athletes below.