Let the Games Begin! Special Olympics Kick Off in North Texas

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Let the games begin, but we are not talking about the summer games in Rio. Rain or shine, the Special Olympics are officially underway at U.T. Arlington where the soggy start didn’t dampen any spirits.

“It’s awesome! I’m ready,” said Special Olympics athlete Colby Bannister.

“The love that we feel when we run into the stadium from the athletes and the volunteers, I’ve been doing this for many years. It still sends chills down my spine,” said Grand Prairie Police Chief Steve Dye.

These spine tingling athletes compete in all kinds of events -- from running and jumping to basketball. These athletes with special needs do it all with a smile.

“Special Olympics opened doors for him and for our family. It’s  given him the chance to belong,” said Colby’s Mom Rhonda Bannister.

This year is extra special as police officers from all across the state raised some significant cash.

“I just want to say, your police officers around the State of Texas raised $1.3 million this year for our special Olympics athletes,” Chief Dye Told NewsFix.

That money goes to keeping the games going and keeping the Olympic dream alive for athletes like Colby.

“He has excelled," Bannister said. "And he’s the person he is today because of the opportunities Special Olympics has given to him."