BY DANETTE BOLOSAN — On Friday evening, June 3, Outrigger hosts, family and friends took to the streets of Waikiki to participate in the 31st Annual Troy Barboza Law Enforcement Torch Run, the largest fundraiser in support of Special Olympics Hawaii.
Starting at Ft. DeRussy, the run wound its way through Waikiki as spectators on Kalakaua Avenue cheered on participants. Our hosts were honored to run alongside the men and women of our local law enforcement agencies who carried the Flame of Hope. As always, the highlight of the run is when the more than 700 runners enter the Les Murakami stadium to the big smiles and loud cheers of the Special Olympians and their families.
Thirty-one years ago, our local law enforcement officers went above and beyond the call of duty to bring people with intellectual disabilities out of the shadows in their communities. By lighting the way with the Flame of Hope, these volunteers paved the way for respect and inclusion for our athletes. The Law Enforcement Torch Run continues to unite our communities together as they keep the Flame of Hope burning for all the athletes involved in Special Olympics Hawaii.
Children and adults with intellectual disabilities who participate in Special Olympics develop better physical fitness and motor skills, display greater self-confidence and a more positive self-image. They grow mentally and socially, exhibit boundless courage and enthusiasm, enjoy the rewards of friendships, and discover new abilities and talents.
The Law Enforcement Torch Run in Hawaii has raised over $6.8 million for local Special Olympics athletes since its inception in 1986.
Mahalo to our hosts for keeping the Flame of Hope burning for our Special Olympians.