Proud of our Special Olympics Athletes

Two gold, five silver, and three bronze. That is the number of medals ACEing Autism athletes won during the Special Olympics Texas Summer Games competition held in San Antonio, TX! We’re so proud of all of them for not only having amazing results, but for competing hard, and giving it their all. Congratulations Tej M, Sophia P, Aacell C, Nate M, and Neil P!

Adrienne Bransky, who has been the Head of the Dallas delegation since starting it in 2018, has never looked back. “The Special Olympics games are an important part of our programming because they provide an opportunity for the athletes to truly see how their skills are shaping up, identify areas that need improvement, strengthen their problem-solving and communication skills, and form deeper friendships,” the longtime ACEing Autism Program Director explained.

What made this competition extra special was when our Houston and Dallas Program Directors met for the first time. “It was great to be able to connect with Adrienne in San Antonio. She has guided and supported me over the years but to finally meet her was great. It was exciting to see other parents and participants come out and enjoy tennis as a team!,” Anshu Parashar, who played with her son Neil in the unified doubles told us.

Even though they were on two different delegations, it was fantastic to see athletes from three different ACEing Autism programs compete, enjoy themselves, and form friendships. It was even more rewarding to see how far some of the participants have come in a short period. “Our VIP of the season was Aacell, who went from competing at Level 1 in the area competition, to competing at Level 3 in the state competition,” Adrienne shared. “It was wonderful to see his growth during the month between the area and state competitions. There was a lot to learn, especially when it came to doubles strategy, and it was amazing to see how quickly he adapted,” she proudly recalled.

Neil’s mother echoed the same sentiment when it came to participating in the competition and how much he’s gained from the game of tennis. “I hope he understands that tennis is something that he can utilize to connect with the outer world and he gains confidence. It is fun to watch when he realizes he has won a great point. I get nervous when he has close games and it’s hard for me to sit and watch,” she laughed.

Congratulations to all on a very successful competition! As Neil told us after the tournament, “I felt really good about my tournament,” and we feel the same way!

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