Closing ceremonies held for Los Angeles Special Olympics
JOHN ROGERS, Associated Press
LOS ANGELES (AP) — Thousands of athletes have said goodbye to Los Angeles as the Special Olympics draws to a close.
Athletes from more than 160 countries were cheered Sunday as they marched into the Los Angeles Memorial Coliseum for closing ceremonies after more than a week of games.
The colorful Special Olympics flag was lowered and presented to a delegation from Austria, where the Winter Games will be held in 2017.
Some 6,500 athletes with learning disabilities took part in contests ranging from weightlifting to soccer. Although not everyone won gold, silver or bronze medals, every competitor received a performance ribbon and a chance to take to the victory stand following their competition.
Many also won the hearts of the estimated 500,000 people who turned out to watch at venues in and around Los Angeles.