WASHINGTON, DC – House Democratic Whip Steny H. Hoyer (MD) released the following statement today on the fiftieth anniversary of the Special Olympics:

“As we mark the fiftieth anniversary of the creation of the Special Olympics, we celebrate the vision of Eunice Kennedy Shriver, the leadership of Tim Shriver, and the accomplishments of all those living with intellectual disabilities in our country and around the world.  I’ve been proud to be a supporter of the Special Olympics for many years and work to secure federal funding to bolster the organization’s efforts.

“Throughout its history, the Special Olympics has brought dignity and pride of achievement to those with intellectual disabilities.  Its participants have drawn strength not only from athletics but also from the ethos of the Special Olympics, encapsulated in the motto: ‘Let me win – but if I cannot win, let me be brave in the attempt.’  I join in thanking the nearly 5 million athletes and the more than 1 million coaches and volunteers who have made the Special Olympics into an extraordinary movement that has transformed lives, built community, and changed attitudes about those with intellectual disabilities and their ability to participate fully in the life of our nation and the world.  I wish the Special Olympics much success as it embarks on the next fifty years of the ‘Inclusion Revolution.’”