In perfect harmony.
There are few things that sound better than a well-tuned quartet.
Recently, the performance turned in by a quartet of Special Olympians was truly music to the ears of the fans of Team Ohio.
On July 6, Madison County Special Olympic athletes Micheal Elfrink and John Zeeck, as well as unified partners Lincoln Comer and Chris Zeeck, played integral roles for Ohio’s volleyball title game over Arizona in Seattle, Washington. The victory earned the squad a gold medal in the USA Special Olympics Games.
Comer, the Director of Special Olympics and Community Recreation for Madison County Board of Developmental Disabilities, is a USA Special Olympics veteran. He played as a unified softball partner in 2006 and was the volleyball coach at these same games four years ago — each time bringing home silver.
This time he helped bring home gold.
After splitting the first two games of the championship round, Ohio and Arizona were tied at a game apiece. As they took the court for the gold medal decider, all four Madison County players were out there proudly representing the Buckeye State.
“Everyone worked so hard throughout the week to get to the gold medal game,” Comer said of himself and his 11 talented Team Ohio teammates. “The six that were playing just happened to be lucky enough to be on the floor during the game-winning point.”
And the final point definitely had some Madison County flavor.
Elfrink set the ball, and Chris Zeeck hit it where the tall Arizona team couldn’t return it.
“I have to admit, I had tears in my eyes during that last point,” John Zeeck said. “I couldn’t believe that we just won a gold medal.”
In addition to Madison County, Team Ohio volleyball squad members were made up of representatives from Hilliard Special Olympics and Franklin County Board of Developmental Disibilities. The close proximity of the Team Ohio volleyball members turned out to be beneficial.
“I believe our biggest advantage was knowing one another as most of the players from Team Ohio play each other on a regular basis,” Comer said. “We know each other’s style of play which enable us to gel quickly and find success.”
And Comer pointed out that success was also due to the supportive atmosphere afforded Special Olympians in Madison County.
“It goes unsaid that this venture would not have been possible without the generosity from the various communities within Madison County,” Comer said. A big thank you for all that helped make this wonderful trip possible.”