WARWICK, R.I (WPRI) — Members of the Special Olympics USA delegation from Rhode Island will represent the country on the world stage.
Scott Davis of Cranston and Adam Johnson of Warwick left T.F. Green Wednesday morning. Both are competing in bowling in Abu Dhabi for the Special Olympics World Games 2019.
The teammates were making a stop in Newark, New Jersey before reaching the United Arab Emirates.
Johnson said he and Davis were notified in July, but it wasn’t until they got to the airport the experience started to feel real.
“The months go by and you’re really focusing on getting better and getting ready for these games, and then it’s, you know, all your hard work’s about to pay off when you’re about to go there,” Johnson said.
Davis is a third-generation bowler; his parents even met at a bowling alley.
He says competing in the World Games is something he never thought he would do and shared what he’s excited about.
“Meeting new people, seeing a different country, seeing how the culture is… just seeing the sights, seeing everything, just soaking it all in,” Davis said.
Casie Rhodes, Special Olympics RI Director of Training says the World Games is a two-and-a-half-week experience.
Special Olympics USA is comprised of 215 athletes, 65 coaches and approximately 34 delegation members who support team operations.
Team members will compete in 18 of the 24 sports offered: athletics, basketball, bocce, bowling, cycling, equestrian, football (soccer), golf, gymnastics – artistic, gymnastics – rhythmic, open water swimming, powerlifting, sailing, swimming, table tennis, tennis, triathlon, and volleyball.
The delegation also includes Special Olympics Unified Sports® teams, where people with and without intellectual disabilities compete together as teammates in basketball, bocce, bowling, golf, sailing, soccer, table tennis, tennis and volleyball.