Michelle Obama To Salute Special Olympics Founder
Former first lady Michelle Obama will highlight the work of one of the world’s largest organizations for people with intellectual disabilities during a nationally-televised event this week.
Obama will present the Arthur Ashe Courage Award posthumously to Eunice Kennedy Shriver, who founded Special Olympics, at ESPN’s ESPY Awards on Wednesday.
The annual honor is given to individuals “whose contributions transcend sports.”
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Tim Shriver, who’s now chairman of Special Olympics, will accept the award on behalf of his mom who died in 2009.
“Eunice Kennedy Shriver was a passionate champion for those with developmental challenges, empowering them to fulfill their highest potential,” Obama said. “Her work to promote inclusion and acceptance transformed the lives of countless young athletes and inspired us all. I am incredibly honored to present this award to her son to celebrate her life’s work.”
ESPN announced in June that Shriver would receive this year’s courage award.
Inspired by her sister Rosemary — who had intellectual disabilities — Shriver started a summer day camp for people with disabilities in her Maryland backyard in 1962 that grew into Special Olympics.
The ESPYS will take place Wednesday in Los Angeles and air live on ABC starting at 8 p.m. ET.