What a treat for this correspondent to be part of today’s press conference. April 16th 2015 marks “100 Days” until the Special Olympics World Games kicks off this July. As everyone gathered to hear from former Mayor Antonio Villaraigosa, President of LA2015 Patrick Mc Clenahan, and Olympian Julie Foudy, the energy was absolutely electric at the LA84 facility. The global messengers were excited to present the press and the world with the new medals for this year’s 2015 games. There will be 7,000 athletes from 177 countries participating in this global event.
Hearing cheers from the crowd as ambassador to this years games, Dustin Plunkett, introduced the former Mayor. Villaraigosa gave an inspiring speech asking that everyone participate by attending or volunteering, and he also asked the corporate Los Angeles to donate funds to the cause. He called Los Angeles, “The City of America’s hope and promise” and expects that the games will be successful.
It was fun to see a personal favorite of mine, Greg Louganis, winner of the gold in ‘84 & ‘88. In 1984 Greg received the James E. Sullivan Award from the Amateur Athletic Union as the most outstanding amateur athlete in the United States. His presence was that of inspiration and strength. Julie Foudy, Olympic Gold Medal in soccer, gathered a group of the female Global Messengers for a fun photo opportunity. It was so sweet to see how happy they all were with her at the center, in a bright pink blouse, surrounded by a sea of light blue that the lovely women were wearing.
Many that attended had a child, relative or friend that was participating in the games or volunteering. Anyone that is interested in performing or volunteering for these amazing activities can go online at LA2015.org and find out how. There is still time to support the event and yes, donations are being accepted! Even Anita De Frantz, Olympian and president of LA84 is fundraising for the occasion. Stay tuned for some of my interviews with those that make the Special Olympics World Games, LA2015 GREAT!