everyone has a story to tell. in 2018, we told a lot of great stories. here are a few of our favorites. if you’re involved with us in any way and want to share your story with us, do so today!

Athlete’s posts

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thomas cleek plays golf with the pros

Cleek, 18, of Columbia, traveled to New Jersey in August as part of the United PGA Experience at Northern Trust. He had the chance to meet up with old friends, make new ones and receive golf tips from PGA Tour pros. He wrote a blog about his experience.

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a look at an athlete-leader’s capstone project

Allison D’Agostino is an athlete-leader from Columbia. She is involved with Athlete Leadership Programs University and took her final class in March. In order to graduate, the final class teaches the athlete-leaders to develop and complete a final project. She wrote a blog about her experience with her project. Allison will graduate from Athlete Leadership Programs University in May 2019 with a degree in Communications!

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health messenger training in washington, D.c.

Athlete-leader Lynna Hodgson of Lee’s Summit traveled to Washington, D.C., in late September to take part in a Special Olympics Health Messenger training. She took the trip with fellow athlete-leaders Allen Tobin and Lynn Shuffit and blogged about her experience.

guest’s posts


Father lauds SOMO, Team Missouri for sons’ health improvements

This article was written by Paul Burnett, Sr., whose twin sons Paul, Jr., and John who competed at the 2018 USA Games in Seattle on the softball team.

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For their service learning project this year, 4th grade students at Lucy Wortham James Elementary in St. James participated in a Walk-A-Thon to raise money for Special Olympics Missouri.


West County Special Olympics & Marquette H.S.
build friendships & put on a show

Mark Bussen, a longtime coach and volunteer, was inducted into the Hall of Fame in 2013 for his coaching with West County in St. Louis. Bussen witnessed this story firsthand and was inspired to share it with us.

somo’s posts

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somo athletes changing the game

Special Olympics Missouri transforms the lives of athletes every day. With initiatives to activate youth, engage people with intellectual disabilities, build communities, and improve the health of the SOMO athletes – SOMO is changing the game for people young and old. Derek Sandbothe and Thomas Cleek are not only Special Olympics Missouri athletes, but they are the first athletes to be employed by Special Olympics Missouri.


health & wellness at the tlc

Larin Bryant-McCanse is an active athlete from Kansas City. Through SOMO and Healthy Athletes, he has been able to receive resources to improve his hearing, physical therapy and overall health.  “It has given him peace of mind. Larin is growing each day by talking more and more with his friends and family,” said Britani Harrelson, Larin’s sister.


The faithful companion

For the Grammer family, one of the best resources they ever received for their daughter Jessica, 18, who has autism, wasn’t a self-help book or tutorial video; he had four legs, drooled and “talked in a Chewbacca voice.”