Wednesday, July 16, 2008

Special Olympics initially greeted with skepticism

Illinois Supreme Court Justice Anne Burke, founder of the Special Olympics, said it will feel good to see the games celebrate their 40th anniversary this year. She remembers their beginning in 1968, when it was a struggle to fill the stands and get parents to bring their children. By Anne Ryan, USA TODAY
Anne Burke, 64, founded the Special Olympic movement with what was intended to be a one-time track-and-field event. But over 40 years, it grew into an international competition for athletes with intellectual disabilities. "We started in 1968 with empty stands, struggling to get parents to bring their children," said Burke, an Illinois Supreme Court justice. "It took us awhile -- it took 40 years -- but we are finally celebrating life in all its forms." USA TODAY

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