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Glen Crest athletes earn medals at Special Olympics track and field meet

Four Glen Crest student-athletes earned multiple medals at the Special Olympics track and field meet held on Sunday, April 28, at Marmion Academy in Aurora.

These students earned medals in the Region C meet:

  • Srisharan Burra: second place in the 50-meter dash, third place in softball throw

  • Quinn Ruden: third place in the 50-meter dash, sixth place in softball throw

  • John Scheer: first place in the 50-meter dash, fifth place in softball throw

  • Jason Stephans: fourth place in the 50-meter dash, sixth place in tennis ball throw

Glen Crest students Michael Benjamin and Maya Fousias also trained with the Special Olympics team but did not participate in the Marmion meet.

Glen Crest physical education teacher Kelly Nordlund worked with the athletes for several weeks to prepare for the meet. The students were a bit nervous at the first practices. Nordlund felt anxious going into the Marmion meet; the students would not have coaches alongside them and there were more than 1,000 athletes competing in front of packed stands.  

“We saw the kids do a great job. They said: we got this,” Nordlund said. “I wanted them to have fun because it’s really cool to see them competing against their peers. To see them competing in an event that’s such a big deal, it goes beyond just having fun. Their hard work paid off.”

CCSD 89 staff members Nicole Cannizzo, Kris Casey, Therese Conlin, Donald Duncan, Doug Eccarius, Barb Jones, Becky Kelly, Rana Khan, and Beth Obremski also came out to cheer on the athletes.

Nordlund was especially proud that eighth-grade student Zack Thielenhouse showed up at the meet to cheer on his peer buddies.

“It’s such a great day, and I feel so lucky to be a part of it,” Nordlund said. “Every single athlete has a smile on their face. You can’t stop smiling the whole day.”

The Special Olympic athletes will also be part of a unified track meet at Glenbard South on Wednesday, May 8.

Posted: April 30, 2024