Top: Isaac Woody lights the cauldron this past Friday to begin the 2017 Special Olympics Highland Region Summer Games at Mitchell High School. Woody and the torch were escorted by North Carolina State Highway Patrol trooper Jeremy Carver.

Mitchell hosts 2017 Special Olympics Highland Region Summer Games

The 2017 Highland Region Special Olympics Summer Games took place Friday, May 12, at Mitchell High School.

Hosted by Special Olympics Mitchell County, athletes from Mitchell, Yancey and Avery counties competed in the standing long jump, softball throw, shot put, javelin, 50-meter motorized wheelchair, 25, 50 and 100-meter walks, 50-meter run, 100-meter dash and 400-meter dash events.

Music was provided by the Mitchell High School band and friends until the opening ceremony began at 10 a.m. The call to gather the 2017 Highland Region Games was made by piper Gordon Warburton and Bruce Ikard of WTOE recognized the delegates. 

Mitchell County Schools Superintendent Chad Calhoun welcomed athletes and volunteers before Georgia Stamey gave the invocation. Matt McKinney and MHS chorus sang the national anthem and Brian Elkins, Dale Hughes and Sonny Stamey recited the oaths of the officials, coaches and athletes, respectively. 

Mitchell High School senior athletes brought the torch into the stadium that was then transported in five stages. Levi, Robert, Amelia, Hannah and Landry McMahan escorted the torch on its first stage before being handed over to Holly Burleson and officer Justin Biddix for the second stage. 

Mitchell County Sheriff Donald Street and Whitney Ingram completed the torch’s third stage and retired FBI agent Brian Elkins was joined by Reggie Buchanan and Taylor Bennett for the fourth stage. 

The fifth and final stage was competed by North Carolina State Highway Patrol Trooper Jeremy Carver and Isaac Moody, who lit the cauldron and Mitchell High School Principal Mark Woody declared the games open.

The MItchell News

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