The Special Olympics team returned from Abu Dhabi on Saturday.
The Special Olympics team returned from Abu Dhabi on Saturday.

The St. Kitts and Nevis 13-member athletic team that participated in seven sports at the 2019 Special Olympics Games that took place in Abu Dhabi from March 14 -21, returned to the Federation on March 23 with eight gold, two silver and three bronze medals.

Shawn Richards, Deputy Prime Minister Minister of Sports, who travelled to Abu Dhabi to support the Special Olympics team, returned with the delegation of athletes and congratulated them for their hard work and dedication in successfully representing St. Kitts-Nevis on the world stage. “St. Kitts and Nevis had one of the smallest teams at the games in that we only had 13 athletes, however, in my view, the athletes did exceptionally well,” Richards said while giving remarks at the VIP Lounge at the Sir R.L.B. International Airport.

Richards thanked Digicel, the Ministry of Youth, Sports, Culture and Education, the Government, and all the others sponsors for their generous support of the team.

“With even more support and resources, imagine what they can achieve,” he said, noting that “quite often, I think we look at persons who are determined and we come to the conclusion that because they are determined, it is only so far they are able to go. A society cannot fully develop unless we develop all of our citizens. All of our citizens must be included in the development of St. Kitts and Nevis.”

He said there were over 180 countries at the Special Olympics and for St. Kitts and Nevis to gain eight gold medals is a great accomplishment.

“I want to encourage all of us going forward to give as much support as possible to persons who are determined. Let us use our resources to help them to rise to their full potential so that they feel just as equal and included as any other individual within the Federation,” he said, while giving special thanks to the parents by saying, “I want to say a very special thank you to the parents for giving support to your children as they went off to Abu Dhabi…they went out, they did it with a smile and they did it very successfully and we are all proud of them,” said the Minister of Youth and Sports.

The athletes from the St. Kitts and Nevis team who competed were Tanique Richards with two gold medals in 200 and 100 meters sprint; Tyrique Morton with one bronze medal and 4^th place in 800 meters; Roshawn Daniel with one gold medal in 400 meters and one bronze medal in 200 meters; Lemuel Hobson with one gold medal in open water swim and one gold medal in swimming (pool); Roger Crawford with 4^th place in 1600 meters and 800 meters; Krislyn Warner with bronze medal in singles bocce; Lawvander Forbes with bronze in singles bocce; Krislyn Warner and Lawvander Forbes with gold medals in bocce doubles; Jamor Merchant with gold medal in 5k timed trials and 6^th place in 25k road race; Robert Liddie with one gold medal in 10k timed trials in cycling; Shane Nisbett with silver medal in 10k timed trials and 4^th place in 40k road race; Ashtom Mills with 4^th place in 10k timed trials; and Shakir Stapleton with gold medal in tennis singles competition.

The team was accompanied to Abu Dhabi, The United Arab Emirates, by Richards, Clarice Cotton, Chair of the Board of Directors of Special Olympics St. Kitts and Nevis and Ivor Blake, National Director for Special Olympics St. Kitts and Nevis.