Two local athletes prepare to head to Germany for Special Olympics World Games

    (Riverton, WY) – Four Wyoming delegates are in preparation to represent Special Olympics Wyoming at the Special Olympics World Games Berlin 2023, being held June 17-25, 2023.

    Attendees include:

    • Luke Bappe, Athlete from Riverton competing in Athletics.
    • Lewis Fancher, Athlete from Riverton participating in the LETR Final Leg Torch Run
    • Jessica Purdum, Assistant Athletics Coach from Powell
    • Keith Groeneweg, Ret. Wyoming Highway Patrol from Cheyenne, participating in the LETR Final Leg Torch Run

    Special Olympics Wyoming athletes, coaches and Unified partners will join representatives from across the country as delegates of Special Olympics USA, which is comprised of 133 athletes and Unified partners, 38 coaches and 23 delegation members who support team operations. Athletes will compete in 14 sports: athletics, basketball, bocce, bowling, cycling, golf, gymnastics – artistic & rhythmic, kayaking, powerlifting, sailing, soccer, swimming, tennis, and volleyball.


    The delegation also includes Special Olympics Unified Sports® teams, where people with and without intellectual disabilities compete together, as teammates. Special Olympics USA will have representation in the following Unified Sports®: basketball, bocce, bowling, golf, sailing, soccer, tennis, and volleyball.

    Special Olympics Wyoming athletes, coaches and Unified partners are actively training in their respective sport to compete in the world’s largest sports and humanitarian event taking place in 2023. 

    To learn more about the Special Olympics USA delegation and Special Olympics Wyoming representatives, please visit for a full delegation listing.

    The public is invited to cheer for Special Olympics USA by adding their name and message of encouragement to our digital message board at or by posting a photo or video on social media using the hashtag #Cheer4USA.


    Bank of America is the Premier Sponsor of Special Olympics USA. Champion is the Official Supplier and Supporter of Special Olympics USA. MTM is Recognition Partner of Special Olympics USA.

    To follow Special Olympics USA, visit, and follow on Facebook:, Twitter: @specialolyUSA and Instagram: @specialolympicsusa. Hashtag: #Cheer4USA

    For more information about the Special Olympics Wyoming delegates please contact Laura Kelly, Vice President of Programs, at [email protected]. For more information about the Special Olympics USA delegation or the Special Olympics Games Berlin 2023, please contact Rachel McQuiston, Director of Marketing and Communications, Special Olympics North America, at [email protected].


    About the Law Enforcement Torch Run Final Leg to the 2023 Special Olympics World Games in Berlin

    The flame lighting ceremony begins in Athens, Greece June 7, Flame arrival ceremony in Berlin June 13. June 14 – 17 torch runs throughout Germany, commencing with Opening Ceremony for World Games.

    The tradition of the Final Leg Torch Run is for law enforcement officers representing their country, state, and Torch Run Program, to act as “Guardians of the Flame” and carry the Special Olympics Torch and “Flame of Hope” to the Opening Ceremonies of the Special Olympics World Games.


    This Torch Run event is called the Final Leg because it represents the culmination of Torch Run events that have occurred previously throughout the World. The Torch Run Final Leg is not only a salute to the athletes from around the World who will compete in the Special Olympics World Summer Games, but also an honor for the participating law enforcement officers and Special Olympics athletes who comprise the Torch Run Final Leg Team.

    The Olympic flame symbolizes the light of spirit, knowledge, and life. With identical power and majesty, the Special Olympics “Flame of Hope,” in the entrusted care of the law enforcement community, symbolizes the courage and celebration of diversity that the Special Olympics movement represents.

    About Special Olympics Wyoming

    Special Olympics Wyoming is a non-profit organization providing year-round sports training, athletic competition and other related programs to children and adults with intellectual disabilities; offering them continuing opportunities to realize their potential, develop physical fitness, demonstrate courage and experience joy and friendship.  Special Olympics Wyoming changes lives by encouraging and empowering people with intellectual disabilities, promoting acceptance for all, and fostering communities of understanding and respect. 


    Related Posts

    Have a news tip or an awesome photo to share?