The former first lady Michelle Obama presented the Arthur Ashe Courage Award to posthumously honour Eunice Kennedy Shriver, who founded the Special Olympics. “I am here tonight to honour a remarkable woman,” said Obama, and called Shriver a woman who believed “everyone deserves a chance to push themselves and find out what they’re made of.” The Ashe Award is one of the most prestigious in sports. Recipients reflect the spirit of Arthur Ashe, possessing strength in the face of adversity, courage in the face of peril and the willingness to stand up for their beliefs no matter what the cost.
Special Olympics Chairman Tim Shriver, one of Eunice Kennedy Shriver’s children, accepted the honour on behalf of his mother at The 25th ESPYS on July 12. “My mother was a visionary, but, more importantly, a revolutionary,” said Shriver on behalf of the Shriver family and Special Olympics. “Fueled by love and anger, she used sport to break down the barriers, she used fields of play to bring people together, and she opened the doors of inclusion and equality to the most marginalized on Earth. It is now up to all of us to follow the athletes of Special Olympics who can teach us all to accept and include each other.”
Click here to access the Special Olympics website and watch the acceptance speech