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The 2018 Special Olympics USA Games were held in Seattle, Washington from July 1-6, 2018. Nearly 3,500 athletes competed in an array of Olympic-type team and individual sports, with the support of 1,000 coaches, and tens of thousands volunteers and spectators. The Games celebrated the Special Olympics movement, promoted the ideals of acceptance and inclusion through sport, and showcased athletes from throughout the U.S. and the abilities of people with intellectual disabilities. The 2018 USA Games also highlighted Special Olympics’ work in sport, education, health and community-building.

A total of 50 athletes and 16 coaches, staff and unified partners represented Team PA.  #RiseWithUs

View Images from the Team PA Sendoff

Congratulations to the athletes that represented Team PA in the Special Olympics USA Games held in Seattle, Washington from July 1-6, 2018. More than 4,000 athletes and coaches representing 50 state Programs and the District of Columbia, along with the support of tens of thousands of volunteers and spectators, competed in 14 Olympic-type team and individual sports.


The USA Games were the highlight of Special Olympics’ global 50th Anniversary celebration in 2018. Pennsylvania sent 50 athletes and Unified partners along with 16 coaches and staff to compete in 10 out of the 14 sports offered during the Games. 

Visit our Flickr page to view USA Games Photos!

USA Games Local News Coverage:

ABC 27

Local Special Olympic champions return with fanfare

ABC 16

Trevorton Woman Earns 4 Silver Medals in Special Olympics

Penn Live

Area Special Olympians win basketball gold in Seattle

Central Pa. Special Olympics team heading home with gold medal

The Daily Item

Menko claims four silver medals at U.S. Special Olympics Games

Public Spirit

Horsham girl medals at National Special Olympics Games

New Castle News

Local bocce players take home medals from national Special Olympics games

The Times

Hopewell resident captures 4 medals at Special Olympics USA Games

The Pike County Courier

Nathan Jacobs wins Silver in bocce at National Special Olympics

The Express

It was Lydia’s Day


Dinniman Presents Flag to Special Olympics Athletes

State Senator Andrew Dinniman of the 19th District presented Special Olympics Pennsylvania (SOPA) athletes, who represented Team PA during the 2018 Special Olympics USA Games in Seattle, with the Pennsylvania state flag. The flag was proudly be carried by members of Team PA during Opening Ceremonies for the USA Games on July 1st.

The flag presentation took place at Dinniman’s District Office in West Chester, PA on Thursday, June 7th. Those in attendance included: Team PA Head of Delegation and SOPA Senior Competition Director Gina Reid; Chester County Local Program Manager Angie Robinson; Team PA Tennis Coach Sally Kinsey; and Team PA athletes Celine Heffron-Pero (Soccer), Lisa Robinson (Soccer), and Patrick O’Connor (Bowling).

“The Special Olympics of Pennsylvania began right here in West Chester in 1970 at West Chester University. And so that legacy of inclusion in athletic competition continues today, nearly 50 years later,” Dinniman said. “It’s my honor and privilege to meet with our athletes and coaches and present them with a flag as they represent Pennsylvania in the USA Games. I hope it proves to be their lucky charm for bringing home the gold in Seattle.”

 Monroe Co. Athlete Carries Flame of Hope at USA Games

FT5 9688 XL

Ernie Roundtree (at right) Honored with Spot on 2018 Special Olympics USA Games Law Enforcement Torch Run Final Leg Team

Before the 2018 Special Olympics USA Games kicked off in Seattle on Sunday, July 1, an elite group of individuals served as the “Guardians of the Flame” and escorted the Special Olympics Flame of Hope on a journey across Washington State. Ernie Roundtree of Monroe County was among those who made up the prestigious “Final Leg” team for the Law Enforcement Torch Run® (LETR) at the 2018 Special Olympics USA Games.

From June 27 through June 30, the LETR Final Leg team conducted multiple runs and ceremonies in cities, towns and communities across the state of Washington to raise awareness for Special Olympics and generate excitement for the 2018 USA Games. The 2018 LETR Final Leg culminated on July 1, when the team escorted the Flame of Hope into the Opening Ceremony at Husky Stadium at the University of Washington in Seattle. ESPN, the official media partner of the 2018 USA Games, broadcast the Opening Ceremony live on ABC.

Since the first Special Olympics USA Games in 2006, members of law enforcement and Special Olympics athletes from across the United States have carried the Flame of Hope in the LETR Final Leg to usher the start of the national competition.

Check Out Ernie Roundtree In The News!

Special Olympic athletes bring 'Flame of Hope' to Spokane

The Spokesman-Review

Special Olympics Torch visits Spokane Wednesday on final leg to Seattle



  • Eleazar DelaCruz, Monroe County, Athletics - Dark Bronze Medal  Ribbon Ribbon Ribbon Bronze, 3 Ribbons
  • Nina Kaneriya, Columbia/Montour Counties, Athletics - Bronze Medal  Ribbon Ribbon  Gold, 2 Ribbons
  • Jonathan Kuchinskas, Monroe County, Athletics - Bronze Medal  Bronze Medal  Silver Medal  2 Gold, Silver
  • Christina Mereen, Bedford County, Athletics -  Dark Bronze Medal RibbonRibbon Bronze, 2 Ribbons
  • Kimberly Schickley, Columbia/Montour Counties, Athletics - Silver Medal  Dark Bronze Medal Ribbon Ribbon  Silver, Bronze, 2 Ribbons
  • Jeremy Sensening, Warren County, Athletics -  Silver Medal  Dark Bronze Medal Ribbon Ribbon Silver, Bronze,  2 Ribbons
  • Ashley Valentin, Monroe County, Athletics - Bronze Medal  Ribbon  Ribbon Ribbon Gold, 3Ribbons
  • Tom Delaney, Coach - Bucks County, Athletics
  • Taryn Mockus, Coach - Area M, Athletics

BASKETBALL -  Bronze Medal  Team Gold! 


  • Jill Byers, Lawrence County, Bocce - Silver Medal  Ribbon Silver, Ribbon
  • Doug Jacobs, Area P, Bocce - Silver Medal Silver
  • Nathan Jacobs, Area P, Bocce - Silver Medal  Ribbon Silver, Ribbon
  • Andrea Snider, Lawrence County, Bocce - Bronze Medal  Silver Medal  Gold, Silver
  • Cynthia Walther, Coach - Bucks County, Bocce

BOWLING -   Ribbon Team Ribbon!



  • Hanna Gremo, Montgomery County, Gymnastics -  Silver Medal  Silver Medal  Silver Medal  Dark Bronze Medal Ribbon 3 Silver, Bronze, Ribbon
  • Katharine Wenocur, Coach - Philadelphia, Gymnastics


  • Cameron Dittmar, Bucks County, Powerlifting - Silver Medal  Silver Medal  Silver Medal  Silver Medal  4 Silver
  • Joni Talavera, Bethlehem City, Powerlifting - Silver Medal  Dark Bronze Medal  Dark Bronze Medal  Dark Bronze Medal  Silver, 3 Bronze
  • Melissa Bock, Coach - Carbon County, Powerlifting

7v7 UNIFIED SOCCER -  Silver Medal  Team Silver!


  • Tyler Mickle, Lehigh County, Swimming -  Silver Medal  Ribbon RibbonRibbon Silver, 3 Ribbons
  • Elizabeth Porter, Bradford/Sullivan, Swimming - Silver Medal  Dark Bronze Medal  RibbonRibbon Silver, Bronze, 2 Ribbons
  • Adam Smith, Area M, Swimming -   Silver Medal Dark Bronze Medal  Ribbon Silver, Bronze, Ribbon
  • Liz Smith, Delaware County, Swimming - Silver Medal  Dark Bronze Medal  RibbonRibbon Silver, Bronze, 2 Ribbons
  • Abby Menko, Northumberland/Snyder, Swimming - Silver Medal  Silver Medal  Silver Medal  Silver Medal  4 Silver
  • Lydia Wert, Beaver County, Swimming -  Bronze Medal  Bronze Medal Silver Medal Silver Medal  2 Gold, 2 Silver
  • Andrew Yeske, Bucks County, Swimming - Bronze Medal  Silver Medal  Silver Medal Gold, 2 Silver
  • Stacy Banyas, Coach - Columbia/Montour Counties, Swimming
  • Fred Knauss, Coach - Bethlehem City, Swimming


  • David Miller, Adams County, Tennis - Dark Bronze Medal  Bronze
  • Sally Kinsey, Coach - Chester County, Tennis