Four athletes from the Valley joined the Sud-Ouest delegation at the Special Olympics Quebec Summer Games, which took place in Longueuil-Boucherville-Saint-Lambert from July 13 to 15. The four friends proudly returned having won 11 medals between them, and with plenty of stories to share.
The games brought together nearly 1,500 athletes, coaches, and chefs de mission from across the province for three days of friendly competition in five individual disciplines: track and field, weightlifting, swimming, rhythmic gymnastics, and golf. There are four team sports as well:soccer, basketball, bocci, and bowling.
Swimmer Meghan Condie of Dewittville was especially looking forward to the games this summer, as they had been postponed in 2021 due to the pandemic. COVID-19 also seriously impacted the athletes’ training schedules, making this the first opportunity for many to compete since 2019. “I like to see all my friends,” she says, before adding she also made a lot of new friends.
Condie also likes to push herself to improve her times in the pool. She finished fourth in the 100-metre freestyle event, won a bronze medal in the 100-metre individual medley, and nabbed double gold in the 100-metre breaststroke and 200-metre backstroke. “I swept the pool!” she exclaims, of her performance in the backstroke events. “I was going so fast,” she smiles, before adding, “Winning medals is the best part.”
Condie’s “swimming buddy” and best friend, Cindy-Lou Scott of Hinchinbrooke, participated in four events as well, including the 25–metre freestyle, 25–metre backstroke, 50-metre freestyle, and 50-metre backstroke. She was rewarded with two medals.
Marlene Harvey, who is Condie’s mother and the coordinator of Melissa’s Sunshine Camp, also travelled to the games as an assistant coach with the Sud-Ouest swim team. “They were awesome!” she says, with obvious pride. “There were eight swimmers, and everyone came home with at least one medal.”
Jeremy Caron of Ormstown also had a very successful summer games, bringing home three silver medals from the weightlifting competition. “I did good,” he says, indicating he was especially proud as this was his first time competing in this event. He says the best part for him was being able to stay in a hotel with his friend.
Saint-Anicet’s Jason Ford also returned from the games with three medals from the track and field competition.