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The following is an archived video story. The text content of that video story is available below for reference. The original video has been deleted and is no longer available.

Special Olympics bowling brings smiles to athletes and supporters

BEAUMONT- by Haley Bull

Special needs athletes from Southeast Texas gathered at Crossroads Bowling Center in Beaumont Saturday for the Special Olympics Texas' Golden Triangle Area Bowling Competition for camaraderie and competition.

"It's fun to bowl, it's fun to get around people," John Ryan Campbell said. He bowled alongside more than 100 other athletes.

Some of the bowlers on the seven teams competing said the game makes them happy. They went for strikes, spares and gold medals, cheering when they got their awards.

One bowler showed his scorecard.

"Take a look at what I got," Shawn Kennedy said. His excitement wasn't just for himself. "This is for you Grandma."

He bowls every Monday with his team, the 'Pinmasters.'

"It is excellent, I have to admit it is excellent," Kennedy said.

He said he also bowls with his father.

"My dad, me and him come play bowling sometimes," Kennedy said. "My dad is really good."

His father, James Kennedy, is a volunteer and coach for the event.

"It's hard for them out in society so this gives them a lot of something to you know, get out, you know, be a part of and have fun instead of being home or just whatever their lives are," James Kennedy said.

He said seeing the athletes and his son happy is infectious to anyone watching the Special Olympics event.

It's easy to tell by the cheering crowd of family, volunteers and supporters, and of course, Shawn Kennedy.

"I'm just happy to be myself, you know," he said.

Kennedy said he plans to bowl in an Austin tournament next.

 

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