By Peyton Heller
Special Olympics Massachusetts Development Intern
Tanya Sullivan’s engagement with Special Olympics Massachusetts (SOMA) started about 5 years ago when her son, William, was asked to participate in the Five Town School Day Games, where he and many other school-age athletes were able to compete in a particular sports-themed event. With the day filled with excitement, dedication and even a surprisingly special guest, Tanya says it was a day she will never forget. “Last year, Rob Gronkowski (yes, Gronk!) surprised everyone by showing up in Ashland to play football with all the athletes at the Games. We will never forget that day and will always appreciate his time and dedication to children with special needs. Every year, WIlliam has become more confident, capable, and excited to participate. ”
Tanya is very excited to run for SOMA as part of Xtra Mile team, especially because of her son’s recent commitment. She is extremely grateful for all that SOMA has done for her family. “William takes pride in the medals he has won and in the athletic efforts he has made to earn them. We are so grateful to the Special Olympics of Massachusetts for giving our family the gift of this experience. Driving Falmouth to the Special Olympics of MA is my way of giving back to such a special organization that will always have a place in my heart. ”
William has now been involved in Milford Special Olympics Swim Team for two years now and his dedication to his team has really inspired his family. During this year’s game, William was awarded the 50-meter silver medal backstroke and a bronze medal of 50 meters freestyle. Tanya was extremely proud of not only William for her accomplishments, but also her husband and second son, Aidan, for devoting their time to being official SOMA volunteers at the swimming events.
Spends most of his summers in Falmouth, Tanya has had lots of exercises in driving this road race. “Falmouth Road Race was the first “official” race I ran after having my third son (I was probably 30). I wasn’t really a “runner” until after I had kids. I had to find effective workouts where I could take them in a stroller (or double stroller most of the time). ”
Although Tanya’s favorite time of day to run is early in the morning, she’s still very excited about running in the midday heat for the Special Olympics. We thank you for all your support and we can not wait to see you cross the finish line in August!
Do you want to run Falmouth, cycle in Rodman Ride for Kids or a number of other races?Join Xtra Mile today!