Swimmers train for Special Olympics

PARKERSBURG – A swimming team from Parkersburg will compete next week in the annual Summer Games of the West Virginia Special Olympics in Charleston.

Competing will be Kenny Saxton, Emma Clem, Emma Harris, Staci Pursly, Quade Harris, Sarah Archer and David Stuck of Parkersburg.

The games will be held June 6-8 with the swimming competitions on June 6 and 7.

The swimmers have been training since the beginning of the year at the Boys and Girls Club in Parkersburg, said Dr. Wayne Lawrence, coach of the team.

“Weekly practices have been rewarding for our athletes and volunteers from our community,” Lawrence said.

The team is encouraging the community to volunteer and is the only swimming contingent from the county participating in the competition, he said. Emma and Quade Harris cheer for the team and Wilson volunteers his life guarding services, Lawrence said.

Anyone interested in volunteering can contact Lawrence at 330 414-6556.

The annual Summer Games attract about 700 Special Olympics athletes from throughout West Virginia each year. Competitions include track and field, swimming, golf, tennis, bocce, cycling and softball.

Hundreds of volunteers also will participate.

Special Olympics also holds fall and winter games. The Fall Games are held in Parkersburg.